Court Updates2020-03-20T14:52:47-04:00

COURT UPDATES

ALABAMA

UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ALABAMA2020-03-20T13:40:00-04:00

NOTICE OF TELEPHONIC HEARINGS

Friday, March 13, 2020

UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ALABAMA

In an effort to reduce the public’s and our staff’s exposure to the Corona Virus (COVID-19), the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Alabama will conduct all hearings by telephone rather than in person at the federal courthouses throughout the district. This change will start on the following dates for the following divisions and will continue for each docket until further notice:

Eastern Division (Anniston and St. Clair County Dockets) – March 30, 2020; Northern Division (Decatur, Florence, and Huntsville Dockets) – March 23, 2020; Southern Division (Birmingham Dockets) – March 23, 2020; and

Western Division ( Jasper and Tuscaloosa Dockets) – March 24, 2020.

Please do not come to the Bankruptcy Court for your hearing(s). You should contact your attorney to determine how you are to participate in the hearing by telephone.

First Meeting of Creditors (Section 341) meetings will also be conducted away from the Bankruptcy courthouse(s) beginning March 23, 2020. You should not come to the courthouse for your First Meeting of Creditors (Section 341) meeting. Your meeting will be conducted telephonically by the Trustee in a location and manner determined by the U. S. Bankruptcy Administrator for the Northern District of Alabama, J. Thomas Corbett, and the Trustees. Please contact your attorney, the debtor’s attorney, the U.

S. Bankruptcy Administrator’s Office (205) 714-3830 or the Trustee assigned to the case for information regarding the First Meeting of Creditors (Section 341) meeting location and manner of appearance.

Additional information regarding these public health accommodations will be published on the Court’s website: www.alnb.uscourts.gov. Once a date is selected to stop these special accommodations, that date will also be posted on the website. You may call the Clerk’s Office for additional information, (205) 714-4000.

Joseph E. Bulgarella

Clerk, U.S. Bankruptcy Court

SUPREME COURT OF ALABAMA2020-03-20T13:47:18-04:00

IN THE SUPREME COURT OF ALABAMA

CLERK I I RE: COVID-19 PANDEMIC EMERGENCY RESPONSE

JPREME COURT OF ALABAMA

March 13, 2020

ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER SUSPENDING ALL IN-PERSON COURT PROCEEDINGS FOR THE NEXT THIRTY  DAYS

The President of the United States having declared a national emergency and the Governor of Alabama having declared a state of emergency for the State of Alabama amid the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (“COVID-19”) pandemic, the Supreme Court of Alabama, pursuant to the authority vested in it under Article VI, §§ 139, 140, and 150, Ala. Const. 1901, hereby declares a state of emergency for the entire Judicial Branch of the State of Alabama.

The local and state courts of the State of Alabama are open and will remain open under all circumstances, subject to the provisions of this order.

Under the constitutional, statutory, and inherent authority of the Supreme Court, we adopt the following provisions. All in-person proceedings in all state and local courts in Alabama, including, but not limited to, proceedings in the circuit court, district court (including cases on the small claims docket), juvenile court, municipal court, probate court, and appellate courts, are suspended beginning Monday, March 16, 2020 through Thursday, April 16, 2020, subject to the exceptions below.

Exceptions to this suspension of in-person court proceedings include, but are not limited to:

  • Proceedings necessary to protect constitutional rights of criminal defendants, including bond-related matters and plea agreements for incarcerated individuals.
  • Civil and criminal jury trials that are in progress as of March 13, 2020.
  • Proceedings related to protection from abuse.
  • Proceedings related to emergency child custody and protection orders.
  • Department of Human Resources emergency matters related

to child protection.

  • Proceedings related to petitions for temporary injunctive relief.
  • Proceedings related to emergency mental health orders.
  • Proceedings related to emergency protection of elderly or vulnerable persons.
  • Proceedings directly related to the COVID-19 public health emergency.
  • Any emergent proceeding as needed by law enforcement.
  • Other exceptions as approved by the Chief Justice.

The presiding judge or the designee of the presiding judge of each judicial circuit is authorized to determine the manner in which in-person court proceedings for the exceptions listed above are to be conducted. Other exceptions to the suspension of in-person court proceedings must be approved by the Chief Justice. Any permitted in-court proceedings shall be limited to attorneys, parties, witnesses, security officers, and other necessary persons, as determined by the trial judge.

Judges are charged with the responsibility of ensuring that core constitutional functions and rights are protected. Additionally, court clerks are charged with ensuring that court functions continue. Nevertheless, all judges and court clerks are urged to limit in-person courtroom contact as much as possible by utilizing available technologies, including electronic filing, teleconferencing, and videoconferencing. Any Alabama state or local rule, criminal or civil, that impedes a judge’s or court clerk’s ability to utilize available technologies to limit in-person contact is suspended until April 16, 2020.

This order expressly does not prohibit court proceedings by telephone, video, teleconferencing, or other means that do not involve in-person contact. This order does not affect courts’ consideration of matters that can be resolved without in-person proceedings.

Any deadlines that are set by or subject to regulation by this Court that are set to expire between March 16, 2020 and April 16, 2020, are hereby extended to April 20, 2020. This Court cannot extend any statutory period of repose or statute of limitations period.

2

Orders of protection and temporary injunctions that otherwise expire between March 16, 2020, and April 16, are hereby extended until April 16, 2020, unless the court elects to enter an order to the contrary.

would 2020,

trial

This order is subject to rescission by the Supreme Court periods stated herein.

modification, revision, or at any time during the time

Parker, C.J., Bolin, Shaw, Wise, Bryan, Stewart, and Mitchell, JJ., concur.

Witness my hand and seaa 13t

Jord eller

Clerk, Supreme Court of Alabama

3

Middle District of Alabama2020-03-20T13:43:09-04:00

United States Bankruptcy Administrator

Middle District of Alabama

ONE CHURCH STREET MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA 36104

ANNOUNCEMENT

MARCH 13, 2020

341 Meetings of Creditors: Temporary Policies and Procedures

Due to the public health crisis related to COVID-19, the U.S. Bankruptcy Administrator for the Middle District of Alabama is implementing the following temporary policies and procedures with respect to ALL Section 341 meetings of creditors, which policies and procedures will take effect immediately.

All 341 meetings scheduled through April 10, 2020 will be conducted telephonically. Formal notices will be sent by the Court and properly served on all parties on the matrix setting out the call-in number and code for the telephonic hearing. Please check the notice for each docket because the call-in number and access code may change based on the number of Section 341 meetings being held in the Middle District on a given day.

Debtors and their counsel as well as any creditors or interested parties wishing to appear at a 341 meeting should not report to the physical location of the originally scheduled 341 meeting but should instead make plans to appear remotely by phone. Counsel may request debtors appear at their offices, at their own discretion.

Neither the Trustee nor the Trustee’s staff will be present at the originally scheduled locations, nor will telephone access be provided at any physical meeting locations, nor will physical access to the Bankruptcy Administrator’s or any Trustees’ offices be permitted for these meetings. Instead, a call-in number and access code will be provided to all parties.

To avoid foreseeable problems and unnecessary delay, counsel are encouraged to assist in implementing the following phone etiquette guidelines, which will be required of all parties:

  1. Mute the call while your meeting is not being held.
  2. Speak clearly.
  3. Limit all background noise while your meeting is being held.
  4. No speaker phone unless two or more persons are appearing on the same line, i.e., debtor and counsel or joint-filing debtors.
  5. Debtors without phone access should appear for the telephonic meeting at their counsel’s office.
  6. Debtors and counsel are to be at a set location, and not in transit, so that full attention can be given to the questions being asked.
  7. Only debtors and their counsel as well as creditors or interested parties will be allowed on the call, i.e., no “moral support” or supplementary answers to be provided by friends or family.
  8. Any telephonic appearances by debtors without their counsel also present on the call will result in a continuance.

To make the telephonic process as efficient as possible and to enable the Trustee to verify the identity of the debtor(s), a copy of the debtor’s driver’s license MUST be sent to the Trustee via

email by 12:00 noon two business (2) days prior to the 341 meeting.

The email should be directed as follows:

These temporary policies and procedures do not otherwise affect a debtor’s requirement to submit and provide all other necessary documents to the Court and the Trustee.

Thank you in advance for your patience and cooperation in implementing these temporary

changes.

Alabama Southern2020-03-20T13:45:13-04:00

Information Regarding t e Coronavirus (COVID-19) and United

States Bankruptcy Court

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

The United States Bankruptcy Court continues to monitor the most current statements from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as well as all communications disseminated by the Administrative Office of the U. S. Courts (AO), regarding the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). The United States Bankruptcy Court is following recommended guidelines from public health officials and preparedness guidance from the AO. Currently, there has been no adjustment in court operations, except as listed below.

Please note that if you have traveled to China, Italy, Iran, or South Korea within the last 14 days; reside or have had close contact with someone who has traveled to one of the above areas within the last 14 days; have been asked to self-quarantine by any hospital or health agency; or have been diagnosed with, or have had contact with, anyone who have been diagnosed with COVID-19, you must inform the Court Security Officers upon entering the courthouse and your access will be delayed. This will not affect your rights to due process, and alternate measures will be made. If you are so affected and are an attorney scheduled to appear before the Court in the near future, you must notify the court so that appropriate safeguard measures can be taken. You may appear via teleconference or video-conference with the approval of the presiding Judge.

These restrictions will remain in place until further notice.

FLORIDA

United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Florida2020-03-20T14:04:13-04:00

COVID-19 Court Operations Update

Thursday, March 12, 2020

The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Florida continues to monitor the national response to the respiratory illness caused by the novel Coronavirus Disease known as COVID-

19. At this time, physical access to all courthouses within the Northern District of Florida is limited as

follows:

If you have traveled to Italy, Iran, South Korea, or China within the last 14 days, resided or had close contact with someone who has traveled to these countries within the last 14 days, been directed by a hospital or health agency to self-quarantine, or been diagnosed with, or have had contact with, anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, you are required to inform Court Security before entering the screening area.

Individuals denied entry into a courthouse will be given contact phone numbers and instructions pertaining to the appropriate court unit or federal agency. If you are represented by counsel, please contact your attorney. If you have questions about your attendance at a Section 341 meeting of creditors, please contact the trustee assigned to your case. For matters pertaining to the U.S. Trustee’s Office, please call 850-942-1660. For Bankruptcy Clerk’s Office assistance, including hearing attendance inquiries by attorneys and self-represented parties, please call 866-639-4615.

The Court will continue to adjust operations as needed in response to future Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or Administrative Office of the United States Courts (AO) COVID-19 Task Force recommendations. Members of the public are encouraged to follow all guidance from the CDC, including staying home if you are ill, maintaining a social distance of approximately six feet, and refraining from engaging in direct physical contact. To that end, attorneys are encouraged to appear by telephone when appropriate. If needed, to protect the health of our parties and attorneys while keeping our court safe

and operational, the Court may move to exclusive telephonic and video hearings.

United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Florida2020-03-20T13:56:39-04:00

The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Florida continues to closely monitor the national and local response to the Coronavirus virus (COVID-19) with respect to public health concerns. We will be following guidance provided by the Administrative Office of the United States Courts and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), available at www.cdc.gov, but at this time will be making NO CHANGES to normal bankruptcy court operations.

In-Person Visits to the Courthouses: Please note that if you have traveled to China, Italy, Iran, South Korea, New Rochelle New York, or any locale that is in quarantine within the last 14 days, reside or have had close contact with someone who has traveled to one of the above areas within the last 14 days, have been asked to self-quarantine by any hospital or health agency, or have been diagnosed with, or have had contact with, anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, YOU MUST inform the Court Security Officers upon entering any of the federal courthouses within the Southern District of Florida and will be restricted from entering the building. [See Public Notice of Courthouse Entry Protocol [English] [Spanish] [Creole].

Attendance by Telephone at Designated Court Hearings: To the extent not already permitted by the Bankruptcy Judges of this court, effective immediately, the use of telephonic service providers (CourtCall or Court Solutions) will be permitted in ALL non-evidentiary and chapter 13 matters. NOTE: If counsel decides to appear by telephone, you must notify your client that they should NOT appear at the courthouse. Details regarding procedures for using telephonic service providers in chapter 13 matters will be posted on the court website next week.

Any future changes or updates will be communicated as appropriate. Thank you for your anticipated cooperation during this time.

Joe Falzone, Clerk of Court

Supreme Court of Florida2020-03-20T13:57:09-04:00

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 3/13/2020

Craig Waters

Public Information Office Florida Supreme Court (850) 414-7641

watersc@flcourts.org

Florida’s Chief Justice suspends most face-to-face legal proceedings due to COVID-19

TALLAHASSEE – Due to COVID-19, most face-to-face legal proceedings in the state courts will be suspended for a minimum of two weeks under a statewide order issued Friday by Florida Chief Justice Charles Canady. The order takes effect Monday.

Instead, Canady authorized local judges to use remote electronic means of conducting legal proceedings whenever possible. The order will be extended or modified as needed in the future and is subject to existing constitutional requirements.

This is the first time a limit on face-to-face proceedings has been ordered since Florida’s state courts system was unified by a constitutional amendment approved by state voters in 1972.

In the Friday order, Canady said these measures are needed because a public health emergency exists in the state courts. The emergency requires social distancing to reduce person-to-person transmission of the COVID-19 virus, the order said.

“Social distancing” is a public health measure designed to slow the spread of infectious disease by eliminating face-to-face meetings. It includes holding meetings using remote technology.

Under the Florida Constitution, the state’s chief justice is the chief administrative officer of the

state courts system and can issue orders with statewide effect.

Canady’s order follows other emergency orders issued by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and state and national officials. The World Health Organization declared COVID-19 to be a pandemic earlier this week.

Florida’s state courts system first began extensive emergency preparedness planning for infectious diseases in 2002 following the anthrax attacks in Florida a year earlier. Those plans were updated and deployed during the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic.

State court officials recently updated those planning materials again after the virus that causes

COVID-19 emerged in China late last year.

Supreme Court of Florida2020-03-20T14:00:03-04:00

No. AOSC20-13

IN RE:

COVID-19 EMERGENCY PROCEDURES IN THE FLORIDA STATE COURTS

ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER

WHEREAS the World Health Organization (WHO), the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the Florida State Emergency Operations Center have devised systems to detect and monitor the outbreak of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), a severe acute respiratory illness that can spread among humans through respiratory transmission; and

WHEREAS the WHO has declared COVID-19 a pandemic, the Governor of Florida has declared a state of emergency exists, and the Surgeon General and State Health Officer have declared a public health emergency exists, and the Florida State Courts System must, therefore, in an abundance of caution, take steps to mitigate the effects of COVID-19 on the courts and court participants; and

WHEREAS mitigating the effects of COVID-19 is a high priority in the

Florida State Courts System; and

WHEREAS it is the intent of this order temporarily to suspend grand jury proceedings, jury selection proceedings, and criminal and civil jury trials, and to temporarily suspend procedural requirements and limitations that could hinder efforts to mitigate the effects of COVID-19 on the courts, court participants, and all the people of Florida; and

WHEREAS it is the intent of this order to suspend the speedy trial procedure as stated herein in the manner described in Sullivan v. State, 913 So. 2d 762 (Fla.

5th DCA 2005), and State v. Hernandez, 617 So. 2d 1103 (Fla. 3rd DCA 1993); and

WHEREAS, a public health emergency currently exists in the Florida State Courts System that requires mitigation of its effects by adopting “social distancing” measures meant to reduce the increase in person-to-person transmission of the virus that causes COVID-19;

NOW THEREFORE, pursuant to the administrative authority conferred upon me by article V, section 2(b) of the Florida Constitution and Florida Rules of Judicial Administration 2.205(a)(2)(B)(iv) and 2.205(a)(2)(B)(v),

IT IS ORDERED that:

1. All chief judges of the circuit and district courts shall continue ongoing efforts to mitigate the effects of COVID-19 on the courts and court

– 2 –

participants and to prepare to activate and implement continuity of operations (COOP) plans to address the public health emergency.

  1. All grand jury proceedings, jury selection proceedings, and criminal and civil jury trials are suspended during the period beginning Monday, March 16, 2020, through Friday, March 27, 2020, or as provided by subsequent order. However, a proceeding that has been commenced may proceed to completion if the presiding judge, with approval of the chief judge, determines that completion of the proceeding without delay is required by the interests of justice. In addition, the requirements of the double jeopardy clause must be considered in criminal proceedings.
  2. All time periods involving the speedy trial procedure, in criminal and juvenile court proceedings, are suspended from the close of business on Friday, March 13, 2020, until the close of business on Monday, March 30, 2020, or as provided by subsequent order.
  3. The suspension of time limits under the speedy trial procedure restores additional days equal to the number stated herein.
  4. All rules of procedure, court orders, and opinions applicable to court proceedings that limit or prohibit the use of communication equipment for the conducting of proceedings by remote electronic means are suspended from the close of business on Friday, March 13, 2020, until the close of business on Friday,

– 3 –

– 4 –

March 27, 2020, or as provided by subsequent order. However, the requirements of the confrontation clause must be met in criminal proceedings.

  1. During the duration of this order, the chief judge of each judicial circuit is authorized to establish temporary procedures for the use, to the maximum extent feasible, of communication equipment for the conducting of proceedings by remote electronic means, as are necessary in their respective circuits due to the public health emergency.
  2. Additional orders extending or modifying these measures will be issued as warranted by changing circumstances during the public health

emergency.

DONE AND ORDERED at Tallahassee, Florida, on Friday, March 13,

2020.

Palm Beach County2020-03-23T11:45:02-04:00

Citizens of Palm Beach County:

The Chief Judge and Judges of the Fifteenth Judicial Circuit are concerned about your health and safety. The Circuit has taken steps to help ensure that the courts can continue to operate safely including asking the County to implement more frequent cleaning at all “high contact” surfaces in the courthouses.

Today, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Florida entered Administrative Order AOSC20-13. The order suspends all grand jury proceedings, jury selection proceedings, and criminal and civil jury trials beginning Monday, March 16, 2020 through Friday, March 27, 2020.

At this point in time, the courts of the Circuit are proceeding with all court events with the exception of those outlined in paragraph 2 on page 3 (and listed above). Therefore, if you have a scheduled court hearing and it is not a jury trial, you must appear either in person or telephonically. If you wish to appear telephonically, please contact your attorney. If you do not have an attorney you must contact the divisional judge’s office in advance. The courthouses are open.

Miami-Dade County2020-03-23T11:46:23-04:00

ADVISORY

Please be advised that we are in the process of evaluating the issues with Covid-19- Coronavirus and its affect with the Court System.  As a precautionary measure, and possible effects of the Covid-19 (Coranvirus); all Foreclosure and Tax Deed sales scheduled for the week of March 16, 2020, March 23, 2020 and March 30, 2020, are cancelled.  Please monitor the Clerk’s website at http://www.miami-dadeclerk.com for updates on Foreclosure and Tax Deed Sales. 

In civil matters, the court is moving to as many remote or telephonic hearings in as possible.  This includes family, circuit civil, county civil and probate cases.  Litigants represented by an attorney with questions about a hearing on a civil matter should reach out to their attorneys. Litigants who are self-represented should call the presiding judge’s office. A judicial directory is available at www.jud11.flcourts.org.

 

Please be advised that we are in the process of evaluating the issues with Covid-19- Coronavirus and its effect with the Court System.  As a precautionary measure, and possible effects of the Covid-19 (Coranvirus); all Foreclosure and Tax Deed sales scheduled for the week of March 16th, 2020, March 23rd, 2020 and the sales for March 30th, 2020, are cancelled. The sales for March 31st, and April 1st, 2020 remain as scheduled.

Please monitor the Clerk’s website at http://www.miami-dadeclerk.com for updates on Foreclosure and Tax Deed Sales

Broward County2020-03-23T11:45:24-04:00

For Immediate Release March 13, 2020

PLEASE NOTE, THIS INFORMATION IS SUBJECT TO UPDATES AS THE DAY PROGRESSES.

Fort Lauderdale, FL – All jury duty service in the Seventeenth Judicial Circuit Court is suspended for the next two weeks, March 16 – March 20, 2020 and March 23 – 27, 2020. All other Court operations are resuming as normal until further notice.

All citizens currently serving on a panel shall continue their service through the duration of the assigned trial unless otherwise ordered by the judge.

A decision will be made at a later date regarding future juror responsibilities.

For updates and questions, please contact the jury room 24-7 Hotline: (954) 831-7051, Office Hours Only: (954) 831-6089.

Please visit www.17th.flcourts.org/coronavirus-covid-19-updates for updates on Court Operations.

GEORGIA

UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT NORTHERN DISTRICT OF GEORGIA2020-03-20T14:12:32-04:00

UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT NORTHERN DISTRICT OF GEORGIA

INRE:

RESET OF §341 MEETINGS OF CREDITORS :

SCHEUDLED BETWEEN MARCH 16, 2020

AND APRIL 10, 2020

GENERAL ORDER 31-2020

Because of the developing issues with the COVID-19 virus and the national and state declarations of emergency by the President of the United States and the Governor of

Georgia, §341 meetings of creditors scheduled in all bankruptcy cases (Chapters 7, 11 12, 13 and Subchapter V cases), including reset and continued meetings, pending in all divisions of the Northern District of Georgia (Atlanta, Gainesville, Rome and Newnan Divisions) beginning

Monday March 16, 2020 through Friday April 10, 2020 are RESET. A notice of the reset §341 meeting date, and in chapter 13 cases the associated confirmation hearing will be issued by the Court. The Clerk of Court is directed to docket this order in each affected case and serve the reset notice on the debtor(s), debtor(s)’ counsel and all parties in interest.

Please check the “Important Information Regarding Court Operations During COVID-19

Outbreak” tab at the top of the Court’s website, (www.ganb.uscourts.gov) prior to the reset dates for updates on court operations including whether the §341 meetings will be further reset, conducted telephonically, held by some other method, or held in different locations.

The United States Bankruptcy Court Northern District of Georgia2020-03-20T14:09:13-04:00

The United States Bankruptcy Court Northern District of Georgia

Public Notice Regarding Court Operations During COVID-19 Outbreak

Thursday, March 12, 2020

Please review the Public Notice Regarding Court Operations During COVID-19 Outbreak for information regarding scheduled court hearings beginning the week of March 16, 2020 and other important matters.

In light of the developing issues with the Covid-19 virus and the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and other public health officials, the Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Georgia will cease all in person hearings at the conclusion of the day, March 13, 2020.

BEGINNING, MONDAY MARCH 16, 2020, ALL HEARINGS NOTICED FOR THE BANKRUPTCY COURT IN THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF GEORGIA WILL BE HELD TELEPHONICALLY ONLY UNLESS ARRANGEMENTS HAVE BEEN MADE OTHERWISE WITH CHAMBERS.  THIS APPLIES TO THE ATLANTA,  GAINESVILLE, ROME AND NEWNAN DIVISIONS. The hearings will be held via AT&T call in numbers.  You can find the dial in number and passcode on each “Judges’ Information” tab and on each judge’s webpage at www.ganb.uscourts.gov.  When scheduling future hearings, please continue to schedule them for in person hearings, but add the following to the hearing notice: “Given the current public health crisis, hearings may be telephonic only.  Please check the “Important Information Regarding Court Operations During COVID-19 Outbreak” tab at the top of the GANB Website prior to the hearing for instructions on whether to appear in person or by phone.”

The Court will continue to be open and staff will continue to be present.  We are prepared to handle any emergencies that may arise in our cases.

This Notice does NOT apply to §341 meetings of creditors or any other requirements of the United States Trustee and does not apply to any court other than the Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Georgia.

We recognize this is an unusual step, but it is an unusual time.  We ask all parties to be patient as we work through this new procedure.  You can each facilitate the telephonic hearings by contacting your opposing counsel and interested parties well in advance of hearings to resolve any issues that can be resolved.  We also encourage you to use the Voluntary Notice Procedures set out in General Order 24-2018) to avoid the need for hearings.

If you have questions about a specific case, please contact the appropriate judge’s chambers.  If you have questions about the Clerk’s office or of a general nature, please email:  info@ganb.uscourts.gov.

Thank you for your cooperation.

Wendy L. Hagenau, Chief United States Bankruptcy Judge
M. Regina Thomas, Clerk of Court
3.12.2020

THE STATE OF GEORGIA2020-04-06T14:34:05-04:00

THE  STATE  OF GEORGIA

EXECUTIVE ORDER

BY THE GOVERNOR:

EXECUTIVE ORDER TO ENSURE A SAFE &HEALTHY GEORGIA

WHEREAS:

WHEREAS:

WHEREAS: WHEREAS:

WHEREAS:

WHEREAS:

WHEREAS:

WHEREAS:

On March 14, 2020, due to the impact of COVID-19 on the State of Georgia, I issued Executive Order No. 03.14.20.01, declaring a Public Health State of Emergency in Georgia; and

The Georgia General Assembly concurred with Executive Order 03.14.20.01 by joint resolution on March 16, 2020; and

The number of COVID-19 cases in Georgia continues to rise; and

The Georgia Department of Public Health has determined that COVID-19 is spreading throughout communities, requiring the implementation of ce1tain restrictions to limit the spread; and

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has determined that older adults, people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions, and certain other people groups may be at higher risk for more serious complications from COVID-19; and

Code Section 38-3-51(c)(4) vests the Governor with the power to perform and exercise such other functions, powers, and duties as may be deemed necessary to promote and secure the safety and protection of the civilian population; and

Code Section 38-3-51(d)(1) vests the Governor with the power to suspend any regulatmy statute prescribing the procedures for conduct of state business, or the orders, rules, or regulations of any state agency if strict compliance ,vith any statute, order, rule, or regulation would in any way prevent, hinder, or delay necessary action in coping with the emergency or disaster; and

Code Sections 31-2A-4 and 31-12-4 vests the Department of Public Health with the power to segregate and isolate certain individuals with ce1tain communicable diseases or conditions when said individuals’ exposure to the general population is likely to endanger the health of others; and

In consultation with the Governor’s Coronavirus Task Force and health and emergency preparedness officials, I have determined that the following temporary actions are necessary and appropriate to protect the health, safety, and welfare of Georgia’s residents and visitors.

Now, THEREFORE, PURSUANT TO AFOREMENTIONED GEORGIA LAW AND THE AUTHORITY VESTED IN ME AS GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF GEORGIA, IT IS HEREBY

All residents and visitors of the State of Georgia shall practice social distancing and sanitation in accordance with this Order and guidelines published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

IT IS FURTHER

No business, establishment, corporation, non-profit corporation, organization, or county or municipal government shall allow more than ten (10) persons to be gathered at a single location if such gathering requires persons to stand orto beseated within six (6) feet of any other person. This provision shall not apply to cohabitating persons outside of their homes, family units or roommates residing together in private homes, or entities defined as “Critical Infrastructure” by this Order.

IT IS FURTHER

That as used in this Order, the term “single location” shall be interpreted to mean a space where all persons gathered cannot maintain at least six (6) feet of distance between themselves and any other person. The term “single location” shall not include private residences.

IT IS FURTHER

That all residents and visitors of the State of Georgia are required to shelter in place ,-vithin their homes or places of residence, meaning remaining in their place of residence and taking every possible precaution to limit social interaction to prevent the spread or infection of COVID-19 to themselves or any other person, unless they are:

1. Conducting or participating in Essential Services;

2. Performing Necessary Travel;

3. Are engaged in the performance of, or travel to and from, the performance of Minimum Basic Operations for a business, establishment, corporation, non-profit corporation, or organization not classified as Critical Infrastructure; or

4. Are part of the workforce for Critical Infrastructure and are actively engaged in the performance of, or travel to and from, their respective employment.

IT IS FURTHER

That Essential Services permitted pursuant to the provisions of this Order are limited to the following:

  1. Obtaining necessary supplies and services for family or household members, such as food and supplies for household consumption and use, medical supplies or medication, supplies and equipment needed to work from home, and products needed to maintain safety, sanitation, and essential maintenance of the home or residence. Preference should be given to online ordering, home delivery, and curbside pick-up services wherever possible as opposed to in-store shopping.
  2. Engaging in activities essential for the health and safety of

family or household members, such as seeking medical, behavioral health, or emergency services.

  1. Engaging in outdoor exercise activities so long as a minimum distance of six (6) feet is maintained during such activities between all persons who are not occupants of the same household or residence.

IT IS FURTHER

That Necessary Travel permitted under this Order is limited to such travel as is required to conduct or paiticipate in Essential Services, Minimum Basic Operations, or Critical Infrastructure as defined by this Order.

IT IS FURTHER

That Minimum Basic Operations are limited to:

1. The minimum necessary activities to maintain the value of a business, establishment, corporation, non-profit corporation, or organization, provide services, manage inventory, ensure security, process payroll and employee benefits, or for related functions. Such minimum necessary activities include remaining open to the public subject to the restrictions of this Order.

2. The minimum necessary activities to facilitate employees or volunteers being able to work remotely from their residences or members or patrons being able to participate remotely from their residences.

3. Instances where employees are working outdoors without regular contact with other persons, such as delivery services, contractors, landscape businesses, and agricultural industry services.

IT IS FURTHER

ORDERED:

That all businesses, establishments, corporations, non-profit corporations, or organizations that are not Critical Infrastructure shall only engage in Minimum Basic Operations as defined in this Order during the effective dates of this Order. Such entities shall also implement measures which mitigate the exposure and spread of COVID-19 among its workforce. Such measures shall include the following:

  1. Screening and evaluating workers who exhibit signs of illness, such as a fever over 100-4 degrees Fahrenheit, cough, or sh01tness of breath;
  2. Requiring workers who exhibit signs of illness to not repo1t to work or to seek medical attention;
  3. Enhancing sanitation of the workplace as appropriate;
  4. Requiring hand washing or sanitation by workers at appropriate places within the business location;
  5. Providing personal protective equipment as available and appropriate to the function and location of the worker within the business location;
  6. Prohibiting gatherings of workers during working hours;
  7. Permitting workers to take breaks and meals outside, in their office or personal workspace, or in such other areas where proper social distancing is attainable;
  8. Implementing teleworking for all possible workers;
  9. Implementing staggered shifts for all possible workers;
  10. Holding all meetings and conferences virtually, wherever possible;
  11. Delivering intangible services remotely wherever possible;
  12. Discouraging workers from using other workers’ phones, desks, offices, or other work tools and equipment;
  13. Prohibiting handshaking and other unnecessary person-to­ person contact in the workplace;
  14. Placing notices that encourage hand hygiene at the entrance to the workplace and in other workplace areas where they are likely to be seen;
  15. Suspending the use of Personal Identification Number (“PIN”) pads, PIN entry devices, electronic signature capture, and any other credit card receipt signature requirements to the extent such suspension is permitted by agreements v1,ith credit card companies and credit agencies;
  16. Enforcing social distancing of non-cohabitating persons while present on such entity’s leased or owned property;
  17. For retailers and sen,ice prm,iders, providing for alternative points of sale outside of buildings, including curbside pick-up or delivery of products and/or services if an alternative point of sale is permitted under Georgia law;
  18. Increasing physical space between workers and customers;
  19. Providing disinfectant and sanitation products for workers to clean their workspace, equipment, and tools;
  20. Increasing physical space between workers’ worksites to at least six (6) feet.

    ORDERED:

    IT IS FURTHER

    The term “Critical Infrastructure” shall refer to businesses, establishments, corporations, non-profit corporations, and organizations as defined by the U.S. Depaitment of Homeland Security as “essential critical infrastructure workforce,” in guidance dated March 19, 2020, and revised on March 28, 2020, and those suppliers which provide essential goods and services to the critical infrastructure workforce as well as entities that provide legal services, home hospice, and non-profit corporations or non-profit organizations that offer food distribution or other health or mental health services. The operation of Critical Infrastructure shall not be impeded by county, municipal, or local ordinance.

    Critical Infrastructure that continues in-person operation during the effective dates of this Order shall implement measures which mitigate the exposure and spread of COVID-19 among its workforce. Such measures may include, but shall not be limited to:

    1. Screening and evaluating workers who exhibit signs of illness,

    such as a fever over 100-4 degrees Fahrenheit, cough, or shortness of breath;

    1. Requiring workers who exhibit signs of illness to not report to work or to seek medical attention;
    2. Enhancing sanitation of the workplace as appropriate;
    3. Requiring hand washing or sanitation by workers at appropriate places Yl>ithin the business location;
    4. Providing personal protective equipment as available and appropriate to the function and location of the worker ,\,ithin the business location;
    5. Prohibiting gatherings of workers during working hours;
    6. Permitting workers to take breaks and lunch outside, in their office or personal workspace, or in such other areas where proper social distancing is attainable;
    7. Implementing teleworking for all possible workers;
    8. Implementing staggered shifts for all possible workers;
    9. Holding all meetings and conferences viitually, wherever possible;
    10. Delivering intangible services remotely wherever possible;
    11. Discouraging workers from using other workers’ phones, desks, offices, or other work tools and equipment;
    12. Providing disinfectant and sanitation products for workers to clean their workspace, equipment, and tools;
    13. Prohibiting handshaking and other unnecessa1y person-to­ person contact in the workplace; and
    14. Placing notices that encourage hand hygiene at the entrance to the workplace and in other workplace areas where they are likely to be seen; and
    15. Suspending the use of Personal Identification Number (“PIN”) pads, PIN entry devices, electronic signature capture, and any other credit card receipt signature requirements to the extent such suspension is permitted by agreements with credit card companies and credit agencies.

       FURTHER

      That the Georgia Depaitment of Economic Development is authorized to issue guidance to any business, corporation, organization, or industry trade group regarding its status as Critical Infrastructure. This guidance shall not require a finding of fact but shall be in writing and shall be considered a final agency action for the purpose of proceedings under Code Section 50-13-19.

       FURTHER

      All restaurants and private social clubs shall cease providing dine-in services. Takeout, curbside pick-up, and delive1y are permitted in accordance with the provisions of this Order.

      This provision shall not limit the operation of dine-in services in hospitals, healthcare facilities, nursing homes, or other long-term care facilities; however, to the extent possible, such facilities should offer in-room dining.

      FURTHER

      That all gyms, fitness centers, bowling alleys, theaters, live performance venues, operators of amusement rides as defined by Code Section 25-15-51, body art studios permitted pursuant to Code Section 31-40-2, businesses registered pursuant to Code Sections 43- 10-11 and 43-10-18, estheticians as defined by Code Section 43-10- 1(8), hair designers as defined by Code Section 43-10-1(9), persons licensed to practice massage therapy pursuant to Code Section 43- 24A-8, and businesses which possess a license to operate as or otherwise meet the definition of “bar” as defined by Code Section 3- 1-2(2.1), shall cease in-person operations and shall close to the public while this Order is in effect.

IT IS FURTHER

That persons required to shelter in place under any provision of this Order shall not receive visitors, except as follows:

  1. Visitors providing medical, behavioral health, or emergency services or medical supplies or medication, including home hospice;
  2. Visitors providing supp01t for the person to conduct activities of daily living or instrumental activities of daily living;
  3. Visitors providing necessary supplies and services, such as food and supplies for household consumption and use, supplies and equipment needed to work from home, and products needed to maintain safety, sanitation, and essential maintenance of the home or residence; or
  4. Visitors received during end-of-life circumstances.

To the extent practicable under the circumstances, visitors shall maintain a minimum distance of six (6) feet between themselves and all other occupants of the person’s home or residence. Any visitors visiting for the sole purpose of delivering medication, supplies, or other tangible goods shall, to the extent practicable, deliver such items in a manner that does not require in-person contact or require the deliverer to enter the person’s home or residence.

IT IS FURTHER

That the provisions of this Order related to visitors listed in the immediately preceding paragraph shall be strictly enforced against nursing homes or other long-term care facilities, including inpatient hospice, assisted living communities, personal care homes, intermediate care homes, community living arrangements, and community integration homes.

IT IS FURTHER

That an exception to any shelter-in-place requirement set fo1th hereunder applies in the event of an emergency. In such cases, persons are encouraged to leave their homes or residences and shelter in place in accordance with the rules included in this Order at a safe alternate location. Persons experiencing homelessness are urged to obtain shelter and to contact governmental and other entities for assistance.

IT IS FURTHER

That the Department of Public Health, the Depa1tment of Public Safety, or any other state department or state officer deputized by the Governor or the Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency are, after providing reasonable notice, authorized to mandate the closure of any business, establishment, corporation, non-profit corporation, or organization not in compliance vvith this Order for a period not to extend beyond the term of this Order.

IT IS FURTHER

That the Adjutant General of the Georgia National Guard and the Commissioner of the Department of Public Safety shall provide resources as requested to assist in the enforcement of this Order.

IT IS FURTHER

That pursuant to Code Section 38-3-51, the powers of counties and cities conveyed in Titles 36 and 38, including those specific powers enumerated in Code Sections 36-5-22.1 and 36-35-3 are hereby suspended to the extent of suspending enforcement of any local ordinance or order adopted or issued since March 1, 2020, with the stated purpose or effect of responding to a public health state of emergency, ordering residents to shelter-in-place, ordering a quarantine, or combatting the spread of coronavirus or COVID-19 that in any way conflicts, varies, or differs from the terms of this Order. Enforcement of all such ordinances and orders is hereby suspended and no county or municipality shall adopt any similar ordinance or order while this Order is in effect, except for such ordinances or orders as are designed to enforce compliance with this Order.

IT IS FURTHER

That if one or more of the provisions contained in this Order shall conflict with the provisions of any previous Executive Order or Agency Administrative Order, the provisions of this Order shall control. Fmther, in the event of any conflict, the provisions of any quarantine or isolation Order issued to a specific person by the Department of Public Health shall control.

IT IS FURTHER

That nothing in this Order shall be construed to suspend or limit the sale, dispensing, or transportation of firearms or ammunition, or any component thereof.

IT IS FURTHER

That pursuant to Code Section 38-3-7, any person who violates this Order shall be guilty of a misdemeanor. Officials enforcing this Order should take reasonable steps to provide notice prior to issuing a citation or making an arrest.

IT IS FURTHER

This Order rescinds and replaces Executive Order 03.23.20.01.

ITISFURTHER

That if one or more of the provisions contained in this Order shall be held to be invalid, in violation of the Georgia Constitution, in violation of Georgia law, or unenforceable in any respect, such invalidity, violation, or unenforceability shall not affect any other provisions of this Order, but, in such case, this Order shall be construed as if such invalid, illegal, or unenforceable provision had never been contained within the Order.

IT IS FURTHER

ORDERED: All prov1s1ons of the Order shall become effective for a period beginning at 6:oo P.M. on Friday, April 3, 2020, andexpiring at 11:59

P.M. on Monday, April 13, 2020.

SUPREME COURT OF GEORGIA SECOND ORDER EXTENDING DECLARATION OF JUDICIAL EMERGENCY2020-05-13T11:15:48-04:00

SECOND ORDER EXTENDING STATEWIDE JUDICIAL EMERGENCY

On March 14, 2020, in response to the  COVID-19 pandemic, the Honorable Harold D. Melton, as the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Georgia, issued an Order Declaring Statewide Judicial Emergency pursuant to OCGA § 38-3-61. Due to the continuing statewide emergency, on April 6, 2020, the Order was extended until May13, 2020. While the work of the courts in Georgia has gone forward on essential and critical matters, and most courts have continued some non-essential court operations, in particular by using technology to conduct proceedings remotely, most court facilities are not prepared to comply with social distancing and other public health requirements to safeguard the health of litigants,  lawyers, judges, court personnel, and the public during extensive in-court proceedings or proceedings involving a large number of people. After consulting with the Judicial Council of Georgia and other judicial partners, and recognizing that most in-court proceedings compel the attendance of various individuals rather than allowing them to decide how best to protect their own health, it is hereby determined that the statewide judicial emergency Order should be extended, with some clarifications and modifications as well as directions regarding efforts to resume court operations in a manner that protects public health.

Accordingly, the Order Declaring Statewide Judicial Emergency, which would have expired on Wednesday, May 13, 2020, at 11:59 p.m., is further extended until Friday, June 12, 2020, at 11:59 p.m. All Georgia courts shall continue to operate under the restrictions set forth in that Order as extended, with the following clarifications, modifications, and directions. Where this order refers to “public health guidance,” courts should consider the most specific current guidance provided by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH), and their local health department s.

  1. Guidance on Application of the Order

Included in the Appendix to this Order are several guidance documents that clarify the application of the Order in particular contexts: tolling of filing deadlines; tolling of statutes of limitations; deadlines and time limits defined by reference to terms of court; and the continued authority of grand juries impaneled prior to the issuance of the Order. Additional guidance documents may be posted on the AOC’s website at https://georgiacourts.gov/judicial-council/aoc/. It should be noted, however, that as discussed in Section 6 below, judges are being granted authority on a case-specific basis to reimpose certain deadlines that would otherwise be tolled by the Order or establish new deadlines or schedules.

  1. Prohibition on Jury Trial Proceedings and Most Grand Jury Proceedings

Current public health guidance recommends social distancing and other measures that make it impracticable for courts to protect the health of the large groups of people who are normally assembled for jury proceedings, including jury selection. Accordingly, until further order, all courts are prohibited from summoning new trial jurors and grand jurors and from conducting criminal or civil jury trials.

Grand juries that are already impaneled or are recalled from a previous term of court may meet to attend to time-sensitive essential matters, but these grand juries should not be assembled except when necessary and only under circumstances in which social distancing and other public health guidance can be followed.

As discussed below, efforts are being pursued to allow the safe resumption of jury trials. The clerks and court administrators of trial courts that conduct jury trials and convene grand juries will be provided sufficient notice of the resumption of jury proceedings to allow the complicated process of summoning potential jurors to be completed. Information about this issue will be provided to trial court clerks and court administrators.

2

  1. Proceedings Conducted Remotely Using Technology

All courts should continue to use and increase the use of technology to conduct remote judicial proceedings as a preferred alternative to in­ person proceedings, both to ensure that essential court functions are continued and to conduct non-essential proceedings to limit the backlog of such matters when the judicial emergency is terminated. Courts should understand and utilize the authority provided by the emergency amendments made to court rules on videoconferences and teleconferences.

Courts may compel the participation of litigants, lawyers, witnesses, and other essential personnel in remote judicial proceedings, including civil non-jury trials and other non-jury adjudicative proceedings, where allowed by court rules (including emergency amendments thereto). Such proceedings, however, must be consistent with public health guidance, must not impose undue burdens on participants, and must not be prohibited by the requirements of the United States or Georgia constitutions or applicable statutes or court rules.

In civil, criminal, and juvenile proceedings, parties may expressly consent in the record to remote proceedings not otherwise authorized and affirmatively waive otherwise applicable legal requirements. Courts must ensure the public’s right of access to judicial proceedings and, unless affirmatively waived in the record, a criminal defendant’s rights to confrontation and open courtrooms.

  1. In-Court Proceedings; Development of Guidelines

Except for jury and grand jury proceedings as discussed in Section 2 above, courts have discretion to conduct essential and non-essential in­ person judicial proceedings, but only in compliance with public health guidance and with the requirements of the United States and Georgia constitutions and applicable statutes and court rules, including the public’s right of access to judicial proceedings and a criminal defendant’s rights to confrontation and open courtrooms.

3

Before conducting extensive in-person proceedings, particularly in non-essential matters, each court should develop written guidelines as to how in-court proceedings generally and particular types of proceedings will be conducted to protect the health of litigants, lawyers, judges, court personnel, and the public. Guidelines should specify who should be admitted to the courthouse and courtroom and how public health guidance will be followed regarding such matters as health screening of court personnel and visitors, social distancing (including by capping the occupancy of courthouses, interior areas, and courtrooms based on their size), availability and use of personal protective equipment (PPE) by court personnel and visitors, and sanitization practices. Guidelines should provide for accommodations for high-risk individuals. Courts should consider the use of staggered, smaller proceedings to conduct proceedings involving many cases or participants, such as calendar calls and arraignments. Guidelines should be prominently posted at courthouse entrances and on court and government websites to provide advance notice to litigants, lawyers, and the public.

Support for the development of guidelines will be provided by the Judicial COVID-19 Task Force discussed in Section 7 below, as well as by the councils for each class of court. Courts of different classes that share courthouse facilities or operate in the same county should seek to coordinate their guidelines.

5. Discretion of Chief Judges to Declare More Restrictive Local Judicial Emergencies

Nothing in the Order Declaring Statewide Judicial Emergency as extended and modified limits the authority of the Chief Judge of a superior court judicial circuit under OCGA §§ 38-3-61 and 38-3-62 to add to the restrictions imposed by the statewide judicial emergency, if such additional restrictions are constitutional, necessitated by local conditions, and to the extent possible ensure that courthouses or properly designated alternative facilities remain accessible to carry out essential judicial functions. However, no court may disregard the restrictions imposed by the Order as extended and modified.

4

  1. Discretion of Judges to Reimpose Deadlines in Specific Cases

After the date of this order, and with the exception of deadlines regarding jury trials and grand juries, judges are granted the following authority to reimpose deadlines set by statutes, rules, regulations, and court orders that have been suspended, tolled, or extended by the Order Declaring Statewide Judicial Emergency as extended and modified and to establish new deadlines and schedules. In pending or newly filed cases, a judge may reimpose or establish such deadlines on a case-by-case basis after considering the particular circumstances of the case, including any public health concerns and known individual health, economic, and other concerns regarding the litigants, lawyers, witnesses, and other persons who may be involved in the case. The judge must enter a written order in the record for the case identifying the deadlines that are being reimposed or established. Standing orders applicable to multiple cases and orders simply reimposing previous scheduling orders are not permitted. The judge should allow  any party or other participant in a case to seek reconsideration of such an order for good cause shown.

Judges should in particular consider reimposing deadlines that do not require any or only insignificant in-person contact, such as deadlines for filing and responding to pleadings, motions, and briefs, written discovery in civil cases, scheduling of depositions that may be taken remotely or require few participants, and scheduling of hearings requiring only legal argument or few participants.

  1. Judicial COVID-19 Task Force: Comments Solicited

A Judicial COVID-19 Task Force is hereby established  to assist courts in conducting remote proceedings and in restoring more in-court proceedings, in particular jury trials and grand jury proceedings. The Task Force will include judges from the various classes of court and will obtain input from key stakeholders including the State Bar of Georgia, prosecutors and public defenders, civil plaintiff and defense attorneys, court clerks, sheriffs, and the public.

To assist in evaluating the effects of the Order Declaring Statewide Judicial Emergency as extended and modified, comments are

5

solicited from judges, lawyers, and the general public. be delivered in Word or PDF format J CTFcomments@gasupreme.us.

8. Professionalism

Comments should by email to

With regard to all matters in this challenging time, all lawyers are reminded of their obligations of professionalism. Judges are also reminded of their obligation to dispose of all judicial matters promptly and efficiently, including by insisting that court officials, litigants, and their lawyers cooperate with the court to achieve that end, although this obligation must not take precedence over the obligation to dispose of matters fairly and with patience, which requires sensitivity to health and other concerns raised by court officials, litigants and their lawyers, witnesses, and others.

9. Notice Provisions

Notice will be provided as to the expected termination of the Order as extended and modified at least one week in advance to allow courts to plan for the transition to fuller operations.

The impact of COVID-19 varies across the state, and the level of response and adjustment will likewise vary among courts. Courts are strongly encouraged to make available to the public the steps they are taking to safely increase operations while responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. Recognizing that not all courts have a social media presence or website, the Administrative Office of the Courts will continue to post court-specific information as it becomes available on the AOC website at https://georgiacourts.gov/covid-19-preparedness/.

Pursuant to OCGA § 38-3-63, notice and service of a copy of this order shall immediately be sent to the judges and clerks of all courts in this State and to the clerk of the Court of Appeals of Georgia, such service to be accomplished through means to assure expeditious receipt, which include electronic means. Notice shall also be sent to the media, the State Bar of Georgia, and the officials and entities listed below and shall

6

constitute sufficient notice of the issuance of this order to the affected

parties, counsel for the affected parties, and the public.

IT IS SO ORDERED this 11th day of May, 2020.

Chief Justice Harold D. Melton

Supreme Court of Georgia

SUPREME COURT OF GEORGIA2020-03-20T14:08:43-04:00

SUPREME COURT OF GEORGIA

ORDER DECLARING STATEWIDE JUDICIAL EMERGENCY

WHEREAS, the Governor has determined that a Public Health State of Emergency exists in the State of Georgia due to the spread of the Coron avir us/CO VID-19 , and whereas that state of emergency constitutes a “judicial emergency” pursuant to OCGA § 38-3-60 et seq., see OCGA § 38-3-60 (2).

Now therefore, pursuant to OCGA § 38-3-61 , the Honorable Harold

D. Melton, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Georgia, DOES HEREBY ORDER AND DECLARE a Statewide Judicial Emergency in the State of Geor gia. The nature  of this emergency is the continued transmission of Coronavirus/COVID-19 throughout the State and the potential infection of those who work in or are required to appear in our

courts.

Thus, in order to protect the health, safety, and liberty of all citizens in this State, the undersigned hereby declares a Statewide Judicial Emergency affecting all courts and clerk’s offices in the State as it relates to all judicial proceedings.

To the extent fea sible , courts should remain open to address essential functions, and in particular courts should give priority to matters necessary to protect healt h, safety, and liberty of individuals. Essential functions are subject to interpretation; however, some matters that fall into the essential function category are: (1) where an immediate liberty or safety concern is present requiring the attention of the court as soon as the court is available; (2) criminal court search wa rrant s, arrest warrants, initial appearances, and bond reviews; (3) domestic abuse temporary protective orders and restraining orders; (4) juvenile court delinquency detention hearings and emergency removal matters; and (5)

mental health commitment hearings.

In addition, trials in any criminal case for which a jury has been empaneled and the trial has commenced as of the date of this order shall continue to concl usion , unless good cause exists to suspend the trial or declare a mistrial. The decision whether to suspend a criminal trial or declare a mistrial rests with the judge presiding over the case.

To the extent court proceedings are held, they should be done in a manner to limit the risk of expos ure, such as by videoconferencing, where possible.

Pursuant to OCGA § 38-3-62 , during the period of this Or der, the undersigned hereby suspends, tolls, ext ends, and otherwise grants relief from any: (1) statute of limit ation; (2) time within which to issue a wa rrant; (3) time within which to try a case for which a demand for speedy trial has been filed; (4) time within which to hold a commitment hearing; (5) deadline or other schedule regarding the detention of a juvenile; (6) time within which to return a bill of indictment or an accusation or to bring a matter before a grand ju ry ; (7) time within which to file a writ of habeas corpus; (8) time within which discovery or any aspect thereof is to be completed; (9) time within which to serve a party;

(10) time within which to appeal or to seek the right to appeal any order, r uli n g, or other determin ation; and (11) such other legal proceedings as determined to be necessary by the authorized judicial official.

This Statewide Judicial Emergency shall terminate on April 13, 2020, at 11:59 p.m., unless otherwise extended.

Should the state of emergency extend beyond the period indicated above or should the nature of the emergency otherwise require modification, a determination of available alternative remedies for the conduct of court business will be made as necessa ry, and a corresponding order will be entered and distributed in accordance with Georgia law.

IT IS FURTHER ORD ERE D, pursuant to OCGA § 38-3-63, that notice and service of a copy of this Order shall immediately be sent to the judges and clerks of all courts in this State and to the clerk of the Georgia Court of Appea ls, such service to be accomplished through means to assure expeditious receipt , which include electronic means; and

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that notice shall also be sent to the

media, the State Bar of Georgia, and the officials and entities listed below and shall constitute sufficient notice of the issuance of this Order to the affected parties, counsel for the affected parties, and the public.

IT IS SO ORDERED this 14th day of March 2020.

ORDER EXTENDING DECLARATION OF STATEWIDE JUDICIAL EMERGENCY2020-04-07T09:17:09-04:00

ORDER EXTENDING DECLARATION OF STATEWIDE

JUDICIAL EMERGENCY

Pursuant to OCGA § 38-3-61 , and due to the continuing statewide emergency involving the transmission of Coronavirus/COVID-19 , the Honorable Harold D. Melt on, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Georgia, does hereby extend the March 14, 2020 (amended) Order Declaring Statewide Judicial Emergency, which would have expired on April 13, 2020 at 11:59 p.m., until Wednesday, May 13, 2020, at 11:59

p.m., unless otherwise further modified or extended. The Chief Justice will provide notice as to the expected termination of the Order at least one week in advance to allow courts to plan the transition to fuller operations.

With regard to matters not deemed essential functions under the Statewide Judicial Emergency Order, courts and litigants are encouraged to proceed to the extent feasible and consistent with public health guidance, for example through the use of teleconferences and videoconferences, to reduce backlogs when the judicial emergency ends.

With regard to all matters in this challenging time, all lawyers are reminded of their obligations of professionalism.

It is ordered, pursuant to OCGA § 38-3- 63, that notice and service of a copy of this Order shall immediately be sent to the judges and clerks of all courts in this State and to the clerk of the Georgia Court of Appeals, such service to be accomplished through means to assure expeditious receipt, which include electronic means; and

It is further ordered that notice shall also be sent to the media , the State Bar of Georgia, and the officials and entities listed below and shall constitute sufficient notice of the issuance of this Order to the affected

parties, counsel for the affected parties , and the public.

IT IS SO ORDERED this 6th day of April 6th, 2020.

Middle District of Georgia Bankruptcy Court2020-03-20T14:13:40-04:00

Bankruptcy Practitioners in the Middle District of Georgia,

Subject: Middle District of Georgia Bankruptcy Court Response to COVID-19 Pandemic (1st Announcement)

Date: March 12, 2020

  1. In response to the COVID-19 Pandemic, beginning Monday, March 16, 2020, signs will be posted at all public entrances to our Macon, Columbus, Albany, Athens, and Valdosta court facilities and will bar admission into our facilities for anyone who:
    • Has visited China, Iran, South Korea, or Italy within the last 14 days
    • Resides with or has had close contact with someone who has traveled to those countries
    • Has been advised by a healthcare provider to self-quarantine
    • Has been diagnosed with, or has had contact with, anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID- 19

If any of the above criteria apply to someone entering the court facilities, the person will be given a contact information sheet that says:

    • If you are unable to access the building due to COVID-19 (coronavirus) restrictions, please consider these two options if you need to file documentation with the court:
      • You can scan and email your filing to our emergency email address at EmergencyFilings@gamb.uscourts.gov. Please contact the court at 478-752-3506 to inform us of your intent to use the email option. Please be sure to include a scanned copy of a government issued photo ID to confirm your identity.
      • You can also fax your filing to the court at 478-752-8157. Please contact the court at 478-752-3506 to inform us of your intent to use the fax option. Please also include in your fax a copy of a government issued photo ID to confirm your identity.
    • If one of the two options above is not available to you, please contact the court at 478-752-3506 to make other arrangements to file your documents.
  1. If you have upcoming hearings and you fit within any of these restrictions noted above, you should make arrangements for other qualified counsel to cover for you or immediately reach out to opposing counsel and the court about arranging for a rescheduling of the hearing. Also, if you have upcoming hearings, please reach out immediately to your clients and advise them of these restrictions. If your client is within these restrictions, you should see if someone else is qualified to testify on their behalf or immediately contact opposing counsel and the court about continuing the hearing.
  1. The court will conduct an “all hands telework day” event on Wednesday, March 18, 2020 to exercise our capability of continuing the mission at the highest level of service to our customers given a possible pandemic environment. If during our exercise you encounter any difficulties or you have a suggestion that you feel will benefit the bankruptcy community as it relates to this exercise, please email the Clerk

at kyle_george@gamb.uscourts.gov. Your input will be greatly appreciated.

4. All attorneys and parties in interest showing signs of illness (i.e, had a cough or a fever within the last

24 hours), or who have been in close contact within the last fourteen (14) days with a person who had such signs of illness when the contact occurred or has shown them since the contact occurred, are strongly discouraged from attending proceedings at the court.

5. The court continues to closely follow recommendations from national and local public health agencies as well as other judicial entities and will make decisions based on developments as they occur or as they

are anticipated to occur. Be on the lookout for future announcements as this situation develops.

MARYLAND

United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Maryland2020-03-20T14:16:24-04:00

Current Operational Status of the United States Bankruptcy Court

for the District of Maryland during COVID–19 Pandemic

March 12, 2020

The United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Maryland, in conjunction with the United States District Court, is closely monitoring the novel coronavirus known as COVID-19 and is following all recommended guidelines provided by the Centers for Disease Control and

Prevention and the Maryland Department of Health. Persons over the age of 60 and people of

all ages with severe underlying health conditions – such as immunodeficiency, heart disease, lung disease, and diabetes – appear to be at a higher risk of developing a serious COVID-19 illness. If you are scheduled to appear in bankruptcy court and fall into one of these high-risk groups, or if you are experiencing any flu-like symptoms, and may need to be excused, please email, or if necessary call, the Courtroom Deputy listed below for the Judge assigned to your

case.

Chief Judge Thomas J. Catliota

Rita Hester, Courtroom Deputy hearings_tjc@mdb.uscourts.gov (301) 344-3495

Judge Nancy V. Alquist

Brenda J. Wolfe, Courtroom Deputy hearings_nva@mdb.uscourts.gov

(410) 962-4439

Judge Robert A. Gordon

Booker Livingston, Courtroom Deputy hearings_rag@mdb.uscourts.gov (410) 962-7848

Judge Michelle M. Harner

Anna Marie Komisarek, Courtroom Deputy hearings_mmh@mdb.uscourts.gov

(410) 962-2966

Judge David E. Rice Cherita Scott, Courtroom Deputy hearings_der@mdb.uscourts.gov

(410) 962-7769

Judge Lori S. Simpson Gloria Bellman, Courtroom Deputy Hearings_LSS@mdb.uscourts.gov

(301) 344-8031

Chapter 13 Dockets

Effective immediately, until further notice, Chapter 13 debtors represented by counsel are

asked not to attend the Standing Chapter 13 Trustee’s dockets. This instruction does not apply to Section 341 Meetings of Creditors. If you have a question about the scheduling of a 341 Meeting, please contact the trustee assigned to your case.

Affidavits Encouraged

to Increase Social Distancing

Counsel are strongly encouraged in all cases to file along with motions or objections affidavits

and authenticated documentary evidence that may establish a prima facie case sufficient to enable to the court to rule on the matter without live testimony, as appropriate.

Telephonic Appearances

Counsel should review each judge’s practice for appearing telephonically at court hearings,

located on the Court’s website under “Judges’ Info.”

Courthouse Entrance Protocol

The U.S. District Court has also issued Standing Order 2020-02 concerning restrictions on

visitors to U.S. Courthouses in this District. Please review this Standing Order for more

information.

NORTH CAROLINA

United States District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina2020-03-20T14:23:38-04:00

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

FOR THE MIDDLE DISTRICT OF NORTH CARO….. =–

INRE:

RESTRICTIONS ON VISITORS TO COURTHOUSES

)

) STANDING ORDER 12

)

ATTENTION  ALL ENTRANTS

The United States District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina is closely monitoring the outbreak of the novel coronavirus known as COVID-19 as well as the guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC having advised people to take precautions, and having noted that the best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to the virus, and the Governor having declared a State of Emergency in the State of North Carolina:

IT IS HEREBY ORDERED by the United States District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina that only those with official business are permitted to enter.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the following persons shall not enter any U.S. Courthouse, combined Courthouse/Federal Facility or U.S. Probation Office in the Middle District of North Carolina without prior permission from the Chief Judge or designee:

  • Persons who have traveled outside of the United States within the last 14 days, in the state of WASHINGTON, NEW ROCHELLE, NEW YORK, or any locale that has been declared in quarantine.
  • Persons who reside or have had close contact with someone who has been in one of the countries or states listed above within the last 14 days;
  • Persons displaying symptoms of COVID-19, including fever, cough, or shortness of breath;
  • Persons who have been diagnosed with, or have had contact with, anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19; and
  • Persons who have been asked to self-quarantine by any doctor, hospital, or health agency.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the United States Marshal, his Deputies, and the Court Security Officers shall deny entry t0 anyone attempting to enter in violation of this Order;

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN  DISTRICT OF NORTH CAROLINA2020-03-20T14:26:15-04:00

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

FOR THE EASTERN  DISTRICT OF NORTH CAROLINA 20-SO-4

RESTRICTIONS ON VISITORS TO COURTHOUSES

)

)

)

STANDING ORDER

FILED

MAR 12 2020

The United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina is closely monitoring the outbreak of the novel coronavirus known as COVID-19 as well as the guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”) . The CDC having advised people to take precautions, and having noted that the best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to the virus, it is hereby

ORDERED by the United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina that the following persons shall not enter any U.S. Courthouse or U.S. Probation Office in the Eastern District of North Carolina without prior permission from the Chief Judge:

  • Persons who have been in any of the following countries or regions within the last 14 days:

STATE OF WASHINGTON NEW ROCHELLE , NEW YORK CHINA

SOUTH KOREA JAPAN

ITALY IRAN EGYPT

And any other country or region that is the subject of a Level 3 Travel Health Notice issued by the CDC.

  • Persons who reside or have had close contact with someone who has been in one of the countries or regions listed above within the last 14 days;
  • Persons who have been asked to self-quarantine by any doctor, hospital, or health agency;
  • Persons who have been diagnosed with, or have had contact with, anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19; and
  • Persons with fever, cough, or shortness of breath.

It is further ORDERED that the United States Marshal, his Deputies, and the Court Security Officers shall deny entry to anyone attempting to enter in violation of this Order.

It is further ORDERED that if you are scheduled or required to appear at a U.S. Courthouse or

U.S. Probation Office in the Eastern District of North Carolina and you are unable to appear because of the restrictions in this Order, you are directed to proceed as follows:

    • If you are represented by an attorney, please contact your attorney;
    • If you are an attorney and you are scheduled to appear in court before a judge, please contact the judge’s case manager;
    • If you are scheduled to meet with a U.S. Probation officer, please contact that officer directly;
    • If you are a juror, call Jury Services at (800) 342-2539 and leave a detailed message;
  • For Bankruptcy Court matters, please contact the Clerk’s Office at (919) 856-4752;
  • For Section 341 Meetings of Creditors, please contact the Bankruptcy Administrator’s Office at (919) 334-3885; and
  • For District Court matters, please contact the Clerk’s Office at (919) 645-1700.

2

It is further ORDERED that these restrictions will remain in place temporarily until it is determined to be safe to remove them. This Order shall be updated as further guidance is received.

SO ORDERED. This the a day of March, 2020.

United States Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of North Carolina2020-03-20T14:24:44-04:00

INFORMATION REGARDING COVID-19 AND COURT OPERATIONS

The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of North Carolina is following the recommended guidelines provided by the AO and the CDC to help ensure the safety and health of our customers and staff.  Please note the following:

Do not come to the courthouses if you meet any of the travel or health criteria enumerated in Standing Order 12 of the United States District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina. Members of the public without an attorney who do not meet the criteria should only hand deliver emergency filings. All other filings by a member of the public not represented by an attorney should be mailed to either office.  Installment payments may be made by mail or by an attorney through CM/ECF. Copies of bankruptcy papers may be requested via the court’s help desk: cmecfhelp@ncmb.uscourts.gov  

To reduce the chances of coronavirus exposure, the court will be holding all hearings telephonically through the end of March. If an evidentiary hearing requires additional access to the court, appropriate arrangements will be made during the telephonic hearing. Information about participating in court hearings via telephone is available here on the court’s web site.

Attorneys with matters on the hearing calendar, including the dismissal calendar, should contact their clients about this telephonic hearing policy. 

PLEASE REFER TO OUR WEB SITE (www.ncmb.uscourts.gov) FREQUENTLY FOR UPDATED GUIDANCE.

 

If you have questions about a meeting of creditors, please contact the trustee or the Bankruptcy Administrator.

 

Please see the following resources for additional information on COVID 19:

 

THE SUPREME COURT OF NORTH CAROLINA2020-03-20T14:27:39-04:00

ORDER OF THE CHIEF JUSTICE OF THE SUPREME COURT OF NORTH CAROLINA

On 10 March 2020, Governor Roy Cooper declared a state of emergency in North Carolina in response to the emerging public health threat posed by COVID-19. Since that time, the World Health Organization has designated the COVID-19 outbreak as a global pandemic, and the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has urged all North Carolinians to take steps to reduce the spread of infection.

Accordingly, I hereby determine and declare under N.C.G.S. § 7A-39(b)(2) that catastrophic conditions resulting from the public health threat posed by COVID-19 exist in all counties of this state.

Although the superior courts and district courts remain open, two emergency directives are necessary to reduce the spread of infection.

Emergency Directive 1

I order that all superior court and district court proceedings be scheduled or rescheduled for a date no sooner than 30 days from the issuance of this order, unless:

  1. the proceeding will be conducted remotely;
  2. the proceeding is necessary to preserve the right to due process of law (e.g., a first appearance or bond hearing, the appointment of counsel for an indigent defendant, a probation hearing, a probable cause hearing, etc.);
  3. the proceeding is for the purpose of obtaining emergency relief (e.g., a domestic violence protection order, temporary restraining order, juvenile custody order, judicial consent to juvenile medical treatment order, civil commitment order, etc.); or
  4. the senior resident superior court judge, chief business court judge, or chief district court judge determines that the proceeding can be conducted under conditions that protect the health and safety of all participants.

This emergency directive does not apply to any proceeding in which a jury has already been empaneled.

This emergency directive does not apply to grand juries which have already been empaneled.

This emergency directive does not prohibit a judge or other judicial officer from exercising any in chambers or ex parte jurisdiction conferred by law upon that judge

or judicial officer, as provided by law.

2

Additionally, I encourage the superior courts and district courts to liberally grant additional accommodations to parties, witnesses, attorneys, and others with business before the courts who are at a high risk of severe illness from COVID-19.

Emergency Directive 2

I further order that the clerks of superior court shall post a notice at the entrance to every court facility in their county directing that any person who has likely been exposed to COVID-19 should not enter the courthouse. A person who has likely been exposed to COVID-19 who has business before the courts shall contact the clerk of superior court’s office by telephone or other remote means, inform court personnel of the nature of his or her business before the court, and receive further instruction. For purposes of this order, a person who has likely been exposed to COVID-19 is defined as any person who:

  1. has traveled to China, South Korea, Japan, Italy, or Iran within the previous 14 days;
  2. has been directed to quarantine, isolate, or self-monitor;
  3. has been diagnosed with COVID-19; or
  4. resides with or has been in close contact with any person in the abovementioned categories.

*          *          *

The directives contained in this order will take effect Monday, 16 March 2020.

This order may be extended in whole or in part for additional 30-day periods if necessary.

Issued this the 13th day of March, 2020.

Supreme Court of North Carolina2020-03-20T14:21:50-04:00

The following is a message from NCAOC Director McKinley Wooten, Jr. 

Dear Court Officials, Judicial Branch Employees, and Members of the State Bar:

I am writing to inform you that, at 11:00 this morning, Chief Justice Cheri Beasley held a press conference at the Supreme Court to announce new Judicial Branch measures to minimize the spread of COVID-19 among members of the public who have business before our state courts. You can watch the press conference by video on the Judicial Branch’s Facebook page.

Effective Monday, Chief Justice Beasley has entered an order pursuant to G.S. 7A-39(b)(2) declaring that catastrophic conditions exist in all North Carolina counties. Although our superior and district courts will remain open for business, the Chief Justice’s order contains two emergency directives to reduce the spread of infection, which are described below.

Emergency Directive #1
The Chief Justice’s order directs local court officials to schedule or reschedule all superior and district court proceedings for a date no sooner than 30 days after March 16th (April 16, 2020), unless the proceeding:

  1. Will be conducted remotely through WebEx or other means;
  2. Is necessary to preserve the right to due process of law (e.g., a first appearance or other bond hearing, appointment of counsel for an indigent defendant, probation hearing, or probable cause hearing);
  3. Is for the purpose of obtaining emergency relief (e.g., a domestic violence protection order, temporary restraining order, juvenile custody order, judicial consent to juvenile medical treatment order, or civil commitment order); or
  4. The senior resident superior court judge, chief business court judge, or chief district court judge determines that the proceeding can be conducted under conditions that protect the health and safety of all participants.

This emergency directive does not apply to any proceeding in which a jury or grand jury has already been empaneled, and it does not prohibit judicial officials from exercising in-chambers or ex parte jurisdiction. We encourage the use of remote technology (such as WebEx) for ongoing hearings whenever possible. (See NCAOC’s Temporary Audio Video policy, which will be released separately later today.)

Emergency Directive #2
The Chief Justice’s order directs the clerks of superior court in all counties to instruct any person who has likely been exposed to COVID-19 not to enter the courthouse. A person who has likely been exposed to COVID-19 who has business before the courts shall contact the clerk of superior court’s office by telephone or other remote means, inform court personnel of the nature of his or her business before the court, and receive further instruction. The order contains a specific definition of a person who “has likely been exposed to COVID-19.”

NCAOC’s Position on Judicial Branch Employees Working Remotely
At this time, NCAOC encourages all Judicial Branch hiring authorities in the state to consider allowing appropriate employees to work remotely, if possible. The decision by hiring authorities to allow an employee to work remotely will depend on several factors, including the employee’s job responsibilities and whether tasks can be completed temporarily from a remote location. We are aware that not every job can be done remotely, but we encourage flexibility where possible to prioritize the health and safety of our employees, their families, and the community. If alternative work arrangements are not possible, employees should continue to come to work as usual, unless they are showing signs of illness, know they have been exposed, or the situation changes. Employees who are allowed to work remotely may be expected to return to regular, in-office work at any time.

Both of the Chief Justice’s emergency directives and NCAOC’s approach to remote work are intended to implement social distancing practices, which health officials have advised will help curb the spread of COVID-19, and to be consistent with the Governor’s directive to limit large gatherings of more than 100 people. They are designed to protect the public and the Judicial Branch’s most valuable assets — our employees — while also ensuring that the courts continue to uphold the constitutional and statutory rights of criminal defendants and civil litigants with matters before the court.

The Chief Justice and I understand that this order may cause some confusion among the public, and we encourage our state courts to liberally grant accommodations to parties, witnesses, attorneys, and others with business before the courts, particularly if they are at high risk of severe illness from COVID-19.

While NCAOC has limited staff and resources, we will make every effort to assist court officials who have questions and specific local needs. We encourage all court officials to remain in close contact with your local government officials and local health departments throughout this pandemic. We also encourage counties to assign adequate custodial staff to keep court facilities sanitized.
NCAOC is working to establish a hotline with a recorded message for the public and will provide more details later.

We will continue to share information as we address the public health issue at hand. Thank you for your patience and cooperation as we all work through these challenging times together.

MORE INFORMATION

ORDER OF THE CHIEF JUSTICE OF THE SUPREME COURT OF NORTH CAROLINA2020-06-23T10:34:12-04:00

ORDER OF THE CHIEF JUSTICE
OF THE SUPREME COURT OF NORTH CAROLINA

Since 13 March 2020, in response to the COVID-19 global pandemic, I have issued a series of
emergency directives necessary to ensure the continuation of critical court system functions while
protecting the health and safety of all who work in or visit North Carolina’s county courthouses.
Today, Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order 142 prohibiting landlords from taking any action
in furtherance of a summary ejectment or eviction of a residential or commercial tenant for reason
of non-payment.
There are now more than 9,000 pending evictions in our state court system. Hearing these matters
would require landlords to act in furtherance of an eviction in violation of Governor Cooper’s
order.
Additionally, the Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act” or the “Act”)
was passed by the United States Congress and signed into law on 27 March 2020. The Act included a
moratorium on residential evictions for covered properties as defined by the Act for a period of
120 days from the effective date of the Act. The CARES Act did not provide a procedure for local
courts to determine whether a property is covered under the Act and promulgation of additional
rules of procedure governing such determination appears to be left to the states.
Therefore, additional emergency directives are now necessary to ensure the continuing operation of
essential court functions.
Accordingly, I hereby determine and declare under N.C.G.S. § 7A-39(b)(2) that catastrophic
conditions resulting from the COVID-19 outbreak have existed and continue to exist in all counties
of this state.

EMERGENCY DIRECTIVE 17

All evictions pending in the trial divisions, whether summary ejectment or otherwise, are hereby
stayed until 21 June 2020. Sheriffs shall not be required to execute pending writs of possession of
real property or make due return of such writs until 30 June 2020.

EMERGENCY DIRECTIVE 18

In all summary ejectment proceedings filed pursuant to Article 3, Chapter 42 of the North Carolina
General Statutes on or after 27 March 2020, no writ of possession for real property shall issue
unless a finding is made that the property which is the subject of the co plaint is not a covered
property as defined by Section
which is the subject of the co
4024(a)(1) of the CARES Act.

The Administrative Office of the Courts is directed to promulgate a form affidavit to be completed
by plaintiffs in any such actions. For any summary ejectment or residential eviction action
instituted on or after 27 March 2020 and before 1 June 2020, such affidavit shall be completed and
submitted before final judgment by a magistrate is entered. For any summary ejectment action
instituted on or after 1 June 2020, such affidavit shall accompany the filing of the complaint such
that a copy of the affidavit will accompany the summons and complaint when served on the defendant.

EMERGENCY DIRECTIVE 19

There is hereby established a voluntary mediation program for summary ejectment actions. The
Dispute Resolution Commission is directed to submit proposed rules governing such program to the
Supreme Court for adoption no later than 7 June 2020.

Additional emergency orders or directives under N.C.G.S. § 7A-39(b) may be entered as necessary to
support the continuing operation of essential court functions.
Issued this the 30th day of May, 2020.

ORDER OF THE CHIEF JUSTICE OF THE SUPREME COURT OF NORTH CAROLINA2020-04-02T11:52:08-04:00

ORDER OF THE CHIEF JUSTICE OF THE SUPREME COURT OF NORTH CAROLINA

On 10 March 2020, Governor Roy Cooper declared a state of emergency in North Carolina in response to the emerging public health threat posed by COVID-19. Since that time, the World Health Organization has designated the COVID-19 outbreak as a global pandemic, and the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has urged all North Carolinians to take steps to reduce the spread of infection.

Accordingly, I hereby determine and declare under N.C.G.S. § 7A-39(b)(2) that catastrophic conditions resulting from the public health threat posed by COVID-19 exist in all counties of this state.

Although the superior courts and district courts remain open, two emergency directives are necessary to reduce the spread of infection.

Emergency Directive 1

I order that all superior court and district court proceedings be scheduled or rescheduled for a date no sooner than 30 days from the issuance of this order, unless:

  1. the proceeding will be conducted remotely;
  2. the proceeding is necessary to preserve the right to due process of law (e.g., a first appearance or bond hearing, the appointment of counsel for an indigent defendant, a probation hearing, a probable cause hearing, etc.);
  3. the proceeding is for the purpose of obtaining emergency relief (e.g., a domestic violence protection order, temporary restraining order, juvenile custody order, judicial consent to juvenile medical treatment order, civil commitment order, etc.); or
  4. the senior resident superior court judge, chief business court judge, or chief district court judge determines that the proceeding can be conducted under conditions that protect the health and safety of all participants.

This emergency directive does not apply to any proceeding in which a jury has already been empaneled.

This emergency directive does not apply to grand juries which have already been empaneled.

This emergency directive does not prohibit a judge or other judicial officer from exercising any in chambers or ex parte jurisdiction conferred by law upon that judge

or judicial officer, as provided by law.

2

Additionally, I encourage the superior courts and district courts to liberally grant additional accommodations to parties, witnesses, attorneys, and others with business before the courts who are at a high risk of severe illness from COVID-19.

Emergency Directive 2

I further order that the clerks of superior court shall post a notice at the entrance to every court facility in their county directing that any person who has likely been exposed to COVID-19 should not enter the courthouse. A person who has likely been exposed to COVID-19 who has business before the courts shall contact the clerk of superior court’s office by telephone or other remote means, inform court personnel of the nature of his or her business before the court, and receive further instruction. For purposes of this order, a person who has likely been exposed to COVID-19 is defined as any person who:

  1. has traveled to China, South Korea, Japan, Italy, or Iran within the previous 14 days;
  2. has been directed to quarantine, isolate, or self-monitor;
  3. has been diagnosed with COVID-19; or
  4. resides with or has been in close contact with any person in the abovementioned categories.

*          *          *

The directives contained in this order will take effect Monday, 16 March 2020.

This order may be extended in whole or in part for additional 30-day periods if necessary.

Issued this the 13th day of March, 2020.

EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 1422020-06-23T10:30:57-04:00

May 30, 2020
EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 142

ASSISTING NORTH CAROLINIANS BY PLACING TEMPORARY PROHIBITIONS ON EVICTIONS AND EXTENDING THE
PROHIBITION ON UTILITY SHUT-OFFS

WHEREAS , on March 10, 2020, the undersigned issued Executive Order No. 116 which declared a State
of Emergency to coordinate the State’s response and protecti ve actions to address the Coronavirus
Disease 20 19 (“COVID-19″) public health emergency and provide for the health, safety, and welfare
ofresidents and visitors located in North Carolina; and

WHEREAS , on March 1 1 , 2020, the World Heal th Organization declared COVJD- 19 a global
pandemic; and

WHEREAS, on March 13, 2020, the President of the United States issued an emergency declaration for
all states, tribes, territories, and the District of Columbia, retroactive to March 1, 2020, and
the President declared that the COVID- 19 pandem ic in the U nited States consti tutes a national
emergency; and

WHEREAS, on March 25, 2020, the President approved a Major Disaster Declaration, FEMA-4487-DR, for
the State of North Carol ina; and

WHEREAS , in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, and for the purpose of protecti ng the health,
safety, and welfare of the people of No1th Carolina, the undersigned has issued Executive Order
Nos. 116-122, 124-125, 129- 131, 133-136, and 138-141; and

WHEREAS, more than twenty-seven thousand people in North Carolina have had laborato1y-confirmed
cases of COVTD- 19, and hund reds of people in North Carolina have died from the disease; and

WHEREAS, hospital administrators and health care providers have expressed concerns that unless the
spread of COVID-19 is limi ted, existing health care facilities may be insufficient to care for
those who become sick; and

WHEREAS, slowing and controll ing communi ty spread of COVID-19 i s critical to ensuring that the
state’s healthcare facilities remai n able to accommodate those who require med ical
assistance; and

WHEREAS, to mitigate further communi ty spread of COVID- 19 and to reduce the burden on the state’s
health care providers and faci l ities, it is necessary to limit person-to-person contact
in workplaces and comm unities; and

WHEREAS, such limitations on person-to-person contact are reasonably necessary to address the
public health risk posed by COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, due to the State of Emergency, many North Carolinians are working from home and staying at
home; many businesses have seen a substantial decline in demand for the goods or services that
they sell, causing some businesses to close or reduce the size of their workforce; and some
businesses have been ordered closed to slow the spread of COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, any disruptions or dislocations that would require people to leave their homes increase
the risk of spread of COVID-19: and

WHEREAS, the economic effects of the pandemic have broadly affected business owners, tenants, and
employees across the state; and

WHEREAS, because of these and other economic effects from the COVID-19 pandemic, many North
Carolinians are enduring financial hardshi p and financial insecurity; and

WHEREAS, on April 13, 2020 and May 1, 2020. Chief Justice Cheri Beasley of the North Carolina
Supreme Court issued orders postponing court hearings, including eviction proceedings, until June
1, 2020; and

WHEREAS, in Executive Order No. 124, the undersigned and Attorney General Josh Stein provided
further guidance on the Chief Justice’s emergency order, as it relates to evictions, and strongly
encouraged mortgage companies to take actions to alleviate the adverse impact caused by COVID-1 9
on mortgage borrowers who are unable to make timely payments; and

WHEREAS, when the Chief Justice’s emergency orders allow court hearings to resume on June 1, 2020,
residential tenants in North Carolina wi ll be at risk of eviction; and

WHEREAS, residential evictions remove people from their homes, where they are safest during the
COVID-19 pandemic, and thereby increase the risk that such people will contract and spread
COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, many residential evictions leave people homeless, where they are at extreme risk of
contracting and spreading COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, because many people are now performing their jobs and receiving schooling from their
homes, residential evictions during the COVID-19 pandemic also threaten people’s ability to
maintain their livelihood and receive education; and

WHEREAS, for these and other reasons, it is reasonable and necessary that there be an additional
twenty-one (21) day moratori um on residential evictions for reason of late payment or nonpayment,
beginning on the date of this Executive Order; and

WHEREAS, commercial evictions disrupt and usually terminate the jobs of all the people in the
commercial establishments where the eviction takes place; and

WHEREAS, North Carolina’s unemployment rate has greatly increased during the COVID-19 pandemic, and
it is reasonable and necessary to take actions that protect North Carolina jobs; and

WHEREAS, commercial evictions require significant amounts of unexpected travel, as commercial
tenants move the equipment in the facilities they have leased, and this travel will unnecessarily
expose people to risk of transmitting and spreading COVID-19; and

WHEREAS, the federal Paycheck Protection Program and other programs under the CARES Act, P.L. 1
16-136, have provided financial assistance to small businesses, but these programs provide only a
limited amount of assistance, and some commercial tenants are likely to exhaust the financial
assistance provided under this program; and

WHEREAS, Section 4024 of the CARES Act, P.L. 116-136, protects from eviction, through late August,
tenants in properties with federally backed mortgage loans (including loans owned or securitized by
Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac. or insured by HUD, the VA, or the USDA) and tenants in properties
participating in various federal affordable housing programs, but some dwellings and some tenants
are not covered by the protections in the CARES Act; and

WHEREAS, as a result, it is likely that, absent intervention, there will be a wave of commercial
evictions in North Carolina; and

WHEREAS, for these and other reasons, it is reasonable and necessary that there be a twenty-one (21
) day moratori um on commercial evictions for reason of late payment or nonpayment caused by the
COVID-19 pandemic, beginning on the date of this Executive Order No. 142; and

WHEREAS, the moratori ums on evictions in this Executive Order do not forgive rent or excuse the
obligation to pay rent, and instead, this Executive Order merely delays evictions and waives
interest, late fees, and penalties that arise during the Order’s effective period; and

WHEREAS, the economic effects of the pandemic have broadly affected utility customers across the
state; and

WHEREAS, utility services are essential to the continued health and safety of residential utility
customers, to the ability of workers and employers to engage in teleworking, and to the continued
economic viability of business utility customers, even as the economic effects of the pandemic
threaten customers’ ability to pay for those util ity services; and

WHEREAS, on March 19, 2020, the North Carolina Utilities Commission (‘”Utilities Commission” or
””Commission”) issued an Order Suspending Utility Disconnections for Non­ Payment, Allowing
Reconnection, and Waiving Certain Fees; and

WHEREAS, the Utilities Commission’s March 19, 2020 Order applied to only some of the utilities that
are necessary for the continued well-bei ng of North Carolina residents and the continued viability
of North Carolina businesses; and

WHEREAS, in Executive Order No. 124, the undersigned enacted, for all utilities, prohibitions and
restrictions similar to and consistent with the Utilities Commission’s March 19, 2020 Order; and

WHEREAS, the undersigned has determined that it is reasonable and necessary to extend the utility
customer protections in Executive Order No. 124 for an additional sixty (60) days from the date of
this Executive Order; and

WHEREAS, Executive Order No. 116 invoked the Emergency Management Act, and authorizes the
undersigned to exercise the powers and duties set forth therein to direct and aid in the response
to, recovery from, and mitigation against emergencies; and

WHEREAS, pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § 166A-19.10(b)(2), the undersigned may make, amend, or
rescind necessary orders, rules, and regulations within the limits of the authority conferred upon
the Governor in the Emergency Management Act; and

WHEREAS, pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § 166A- l 9.1O(b)(7), the undersigned is authorized and
empowered to utilize the services, equipment, supplies, and facilities of political subdivisions,
and their officers and personnel are required to cooperate with and extend such services and facil
ities to the undersigned upon request and

WHEREAS, pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § l 66A- l 9.30(a)(l ), the undersigned may utilize all
available state resources as reasonably necessary to cope with an emergency, including the transfer
and direction of personnel or functions of State agencies or units thereof for the purpose of
performing or facilitating emergency services; and

WHEREAS, pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § 166A-19.30(a)(2), during a Gubernatorially declared State of
Emergency, the undersigned has the power to “‘give such directions to state and local law
enforcement officers and agencies as may be reasonable and necessary for the purpose of securing
compliance with the provisions of this Article..; and

WHEREAS, pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § l 66A- l 9.30(a)(3), the undersigned may take steps to
assure that measures, including the installation of public utilities, are taken when necessary to
qualify for temporary housing assistance from the federal government when that assistance is
required to protect the public health, welfare, and safety: and

WHEREAS, pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § 166A-19.30(b)(2), the undersigned, with the concurrence of
the Council of State, may establish a system of economic controls over all resources, materials,
and services, including shelter and rents; and

WHEREAS, pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § I 66A- l 9.3O(b)(3), the undersigned, with the concurrence
of the Council of State, may regulate and control the maintenance, extension, and operation of
public utility services and facilities; and

WHEREAS, pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § l 66A- l 9.30(b)(4), the undersigned, with the concurrence
of the Council of State, may waive a provision of any regulation or ordinance of a State agency or
political subdivision which restricts the immediate relief of human suffering; and

WHEREAS, pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § l 66A- l 9.30(b)(5), the undersigned, with the concurrence
of the Council of State, may perform and exercise such other functions, powers, and duties as are
necessary to promote and secure the safety and protection of the civilian population; and

WHEREAS, N.C. Gen. Stat. § 166A-19.I O(b)(3) further authorizes and empowers the undersigned to
delegate Gubernatorial vested authority under the Emergency Management Act and to provide for the
sub-delegation of that authority; and

WHEREAS, under the terms of N.C. Gen. Stat. § l 66A- l 9.70(a), utilities are considered critical
infrastructure for the State of North Carolina; and

WHEREAS, the undersigned has sought and obtained concurrence from the Council of State consistent
with the Governor’s emergency powers authority in N.C. Gen. Stat. § 166A-19.30.

NOW, THEREFORE, by the authority vested in me as Governor by the Constitution and the laws of the
State of North Carolina, IT IS ORDERED:

Section 1. Evictions Moratorium.

For the reasons and pursuant to the authority set forth above, the undersigned orders as follows:

A. Definitions. In this Executive Order:

I . ··Residential Lease’·means a lease of a dwelling unit in the State of North Carolina to which
the North Carolina Residential Rental Agreements Act, N.C. Gen. Stat. §§ 42- 38 to 42-46, applies.

2. “Residential Tenant” means the tenant in a Residential Lease.

3. “”Residential Landlord'” means the owner o[ and any rental management company, rental agency, or
any other person having the actual or apparent authority of an agent over, any unit in a
Residential Lease.

4. ··commercial Lease” means a lease of any real property that is leased to an individual,
business, or organization that does commerce in the State of North Carolina; provided, however,
that “”Commercial Lease” does not include: Residential Leases (as that term is defined in this
Executive Order); operations of hotels, motels, or similar lodging

subject to regulation by the Commission for Public Health; and vacation rentals entered into under
Chapter 42A of the General Statutes.

5. ··commercial TenanC means the tenant in a Commercial Lease.

6. ··commercial Landlord” means the owner of: and any rental management company, rental agency, or
any other person having the actual or apparent authority of an agent over, the real property in a
Commercial Lease.

7. An action is “”for reason oflate payment or nonpaymenC if the legal basis for that action was,
in whole or in part, the tenanf s late payment or nonpayment of rent.

8. An effect is “”caused by the COVID-19 pandemic” if it is caused, in whole or in part, directly
or indirectly, by the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes, without limitation, not only the medical
effects of the COVID-1 9 pandemic, but also the disruptions to the economy that have arisen since
the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic and the economic effects of business closures and other
public health restrictions instituted because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

9. The “”Effective Period” of this Section is defined in Subsection (B)( 1) below.

B. Residential Evictions.

1. No Evictions for Late Payment or Nonpayment.

a. Residential Landlords shall not, for reason of late payment or nonpayment, initiate or take any
action to further summary ejectment or other eviction proceedings against a Residential Tenant.

b. All Residential Landlords are prohibited from requiring Residential Tenants to vacate their dwelling units for reason of late payment or nonpayment.

c. All leases are modified to disallow evicting, or otherwise terminating the possession ot
Residential Tenants for reason of late payment or nonpayment during the Effective Period of this
Section.

These restrictions and modifications shall continue for twenty-one (21) days after the date of
entry of this Executive Order. This time period (the “”Effective Period”) may be extended by a
subsequent Executive Order issued by the undersigned with the concurrence of the Council of State.

For example, if this Executive Order is issued on May 30, the Effective Period of this Section will
be May 30 through June 20, inclusive, unless there is an Executive Order extending this Section.

2. Late fees and penalties. Residential Landlords shall not assess upon their Residential Tenants
interest, late fees. or other penalties for late payment or nonpayment of rent due during the
Effective Period. If a Residential Tenant had existing interest, fees, or other penalties when this
Executive Order came into effect, all accumulation of additional interest, fees, or other penalties
is paused during the Effective Period.

3. Extra time to pay off rent due in the Effective Period. Residential Tenants
shall be provided the opportunity to make reasonable payment arrangements to pay off, over at least
a six (6) month period. any rent that became due in the Effective Period and was not paid during
the Effective Period. No interest, late fees or other penalties shall be charged on these
arrearages. The six-month payoff period shall be calculated from the expiration of the Effective
Period.

C. Com mercial Evictions.

1. During the Effective Period of this Section. as defined in Subsection (B)(l ) above:

a. Restriction on Commercial Evictions. Commercial Landlords shall not, for reason of late payment
or nonpayment caused by the COVID-1 9 pandemic, perform a self-help eviction of a Commercial
Tenant, require Commercial Tenants to vacate their facilities, terminate any Commercial Tenant’s
lease, or take any action, judicial or otherwise, to terminate a Commercial Tenant’s possession.

b. This restriction on commercial evictions shall apply only if one or both of the following
conditions are met:

i. The landlord is aware that the Commercial Tenant’s late payment or nonpayment is caused by the
COVID-19 pandemic; or

11. The Commercial Tenant provides the landlord with documentation or other evidence that the late
payment or nonpayment is caused by the COVID-1 9 pandemic.

2. Duty to Inq uire. During the Effective Period of this Section, before performing a
self-help eviction of a Commercial Tenant, terminating any Commercial Tenant’s lease, or
taking any action to terminate a Commercial Tenant’s possession for reason of late payment or
nonpayment, Commercial Landlords shall inquire whether the late payment or nonpayment is caused
by the COVID-19 pandemic and give the Commercial Tenant seventy-two (72) hours to respond.
If the landlord does not comply with the provisions of this Subsection (C)(2), the landlord’s
action is voidable by the tenant.

3. Late Fees and Penalties. Commercial Landlords shall not assess upon
their Commercial Tenants interest, late fees, or other penalties for late payment
or nonpayment of rent due during the Effective Period. If a Commercial Tenant had existing
interest, fees, or other penalties when this Executive Order came into effect, all accumulation of
additional interest, fees, or other penalties is paused during the Effective Period.

4. Extra Time to Pay Off Rent Due in the Effective Period. Commercial Tenants shall be provided the
opportunity to make reasonable payment arrangements to pay off, over at least a six (6) month
period, any rent that became due in the Effective Period and was not paid during the Effective
Period. No interest, late fees or other penalties shall be charged on these arrearages. The
six-month payoff period shall be calculated from the expiration of the Effective Period.

D. Rent Remains Due. Except for the interest, late fees and penalties expressly waived above,
nothing in this Executive Order shall be construed as waiving tenants’ obligation to pay rent or
perform any other obligations which an individual may have under a tenancy.

E. Evictions for Other Reasons. Nothing in this Executive Order affects evictions for reasons other
than late payment or nonpayment. However, all landlords are strongly encouraged to work with
tenants to the best of their abilities to avoid evictions in light of the COVID-19 State of
Emergency.

F. Payment Assistance. NCDHHS shall publicize payment assistance programs to aid landlords and
tenants in the payment of their bills.

G. Foreclosure Proceedings. The undersigned strongly encourages all lenders to work with property
owners to the best of their abilities to provide loan payment flexibility that enables property
owners to avoid foreclosures, in light of the COVID-19 State of Emergency.

H. Tenants Should Notify Landlords and Pay Rent if Possible. During the Effective Period, rent is
still due and will accrue. Therefore, the undersigned strongly encourages any Residential Tenant or
Commercial Tenant who is or will be unable to pay the full rent due under a rental agreement or
lease to notify the landlord as soon as reasonably possible and to make rental payments to the
extent the tenant is financially able to do so. Failure of a Residential Tenant or Commercial
Tenant to act as encouraged by this Subsection does not exclude the tenant from the protections of
this Executive Order.

Section 2. Extension of Assistance for North Carolina Utility Customers.

For the reasons and pursuant to the authority set forth above and in Executive Order No. 124, the
undersigned orders as follows:

A. Section 1 of Executive Order No. 124 shall remai n in effect until 11:59 pm on July 29, 2020.

B. Utility Service Providers shall reasonably inform their customers of this extension.
Section 1(F) of Executive Order No. 124 shall apply to that notification.

C. Section 1(C) of Executive Order No. 124 is amended as follows:

”Late fees and payment arrangements. A Utility Service Provider shall not bill or collect any fee,
charge, penalty, or interest for a late or otherwise untimely payment that becomes due from the
date of this Executive Order. Customers shall be provided the opportunity to make reasonable
payment arrangements to pay off over at least a six (6) month period any arrearages accumulated
during the effective period of this Executive Order, of Section 2 of this Executive Order, and of
any other order extending this Executive Order and 180 days thereafter. In the event a utility
service provider and customer are unable to agree on the duration of an extended repayment
plan, the default repayment period shall be six (6) months. The six (6) month payoff
period shall be calculated from the date of termination of this Section of this Executive Order or,
if other applicable Executive Orders extend the protections of this Section, from the date of the
termination of the last Executive Order that extends such protections; provided, however, that
Utility Service Providers subject to the Utilities Commission’s March 19, 2020 Order shall remain
subject to the terms of that effier any Utilities Commission order that may be in effect after
this Executive Order expires. No interest or late fee shall be charged on arrearages. No
provision in this Executive Order shall be construed as relieving a customer of their obligation to
pay bills for receipt of any service covered by this Executive Order.”

D. Section 1(G) of Executive Order No. 124 is amended and restated as follows:

“‘Duration. This Section shall remain in effect for one hundred ( 120) days, until 11:59 pm on July
29, 2020, unless rescinded or superseded by another applicable Executive Order; provided, however,
that after that date, the provisions of this Section shall continue to apply to arrearages that
accumulated while this Executive Order was in effect.”

E. Section 1(J) of Executive Order No. 124 is amended as follows:

‘”Implementation and enforcement. The undersigned directs that the North Carolina
Utilities Commission monitor responses and provide assistance and guidance to Utility
Service Providers, including to the extent possible Utility Service Providers not under the
Commission’s regulatory jurisdiction, in implementing the provisions of this Section of this
Executive Order. Utility Service Providers shall report implementation information 1..veekly
monthly to the North Carolina Utilities Commission, including the following: (1) number of accounts
by type (e.g., residential or business account) for which service termination was forborne, (2)
number of reconnections by type of account, (3) amount of late fees and other penalties not
collected, (4) number of accounts on an extended repayment plan, (5) customer notification
information, and any other information determined by the Utilities Commission. The Utilities
Commission and the Attorney General shall have the authority to enforce the provisions of this
Executive Order through any methods provided by current law. The Utilities Commission, and to
the extent necessary for any Utility Service

Providers not within the Utilities Commission’s jurisdiction, the Attorney General may waive
provisions in their discretion and order an effective alternative. The Commission shall provide a
·.veekly monthly report to the Governor’s Office on implementation of this Executive Order.”

Section 3. No Private Right of Action Against the State or Against Officers.

This Executive Order is not intended to create, and does not create, any individual right,
privilege, or benefit, whether substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any
party against the State of North Carolina, its agencies, departments, political subdivisions, or
other entities, or any officers, employees, or agents thereo[ or any emergency management worker
(as defined in N.C. Gen. Stat. § l 66A- l 9.60).

Section 4. Supremacy Clause.

This Executive Order is not intended to supplant or preempt any federal law, including, but not
limited to the protections afforded to tenants under the CARES Act, P.L. 116-136.

Section 5. Savings Clause.

If any provision of this Executive Order or its application to any person or circumstances is held
invalid by any court of competent jurisdiction, this invalidity does not affect any other provision
or application of this Executive Order, which can be given effect without the invalid provision or
application. To achieve this purpose, the provisions of this Executive Order are declared to be
severable.

Section 6. Distribution.

I hereby order that this Executive Order be: ( 1) distributed to the news media and other
organizations calculated to bring its contents to the attention of the general public; (2) promptly
filed with the Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Public Safety, the Secretary of State,
and the superior court clerks in the counties to which it applies, unless the circumstances of the
State of Emergency would prevent or impede such filing; and (3) distributed to others as necessary
to ensure proper implementation of this Executive Order.

Section 7. Enforcement.

A. Pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § 166A-l 9.30(a)(2), the provisions of this Executive Order shall
be enforced by state and local law enforcement officers.

B. A violation of this Executive Order may be subject to prosecution pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat.
§ l 66A- l 9.30(d), and is punishable as a Class 2 misdemeanor in accordance with N.C. Gen. Stat.
§ I 4-288.20A.

C. This Executive Order limits only evictions for reason of late payment or nonpayment. This
Executive Order does not affect or restrict access to court orders that limit, for other reasons, a
person’s access to a location.

Section 8. Effective Date.

This Executive Order is effective as of the beginning of the calendar day on which it is entered.

Section I of this Executive Order shall remain in effect for the time period stated in Subsection l
(B)(l ), except that Subsections l (B)(3) and l (C)(4) shall remain in effect for six (6) months beyond the time period stated in Subsection 1(8)(1 ).

Section 2 of this Executive Order shall remain in effect until the date listed in Subsection 2(A)
of this Executive Order, except that Subsection, I (C) of Executive Order No. 124, as amended by
Section 2(C) of this Executive Order, shall remain in effect for six (6) months beyond the date
listed in Subsection 2(A) of this Executive Order.

An Executive Order rescinding the Declaration of the State of Emergency will
automatically rescind this Executive Order.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, l have hereunto signed my name and affixed the Great Seal
of the State of North Carolina at the Capitol in the City of Raleigh gh, this 30111 day of May in the year
of our Lord two thousand and twenty

Coronavirus Update for our Courts2020-04-02T11:53:57-04:00

MEMORANDUM

TO: Senior Resident Superior Court Judges Chief District Court Judges

Clerks of Superior Court District Attorneys

Public Defenders

FROM: Chief Justice Cheri Beasley

NCAOC Director McKinley Wooten, Jr.

DATE: March 15, 2020

SUBJECT: Coronavirus Update for our Courts

Note: Some links below go to Juno, which is not publicly accessible. You must be on the NCAOC network to access Juno.

For the last few weeks, I along with the Governor and all state elected officials have been closely monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic as it has reached North Carolina. The recent national response has been historic, as many of our most meaningful and noteworthy events have been cancelled including government meetings, sports tournaments, religious services, and entertainment and business events, and as our university campuses have closed. This pandemic is serious.

Yesterday, the Governor issued an executive order prohibiting gatherings of more than 100 people and directing the closure of all K-12 public schools for a minimum of two weeks. Violations of the order are punishable as a Class 2 misdemeanor. In response to the Governor’s order and the rapidly evolving public health situation, I am writing to you as local Judicial Branch leaders to reiterate some measures in my March 16, 2020 order and to clarify others.

Director Wooten and I appreciate meeting by WebEx with many of you on Thursday. Your input has been and continues to be invaluable. Not only are you the ones with a wealth of experience in your areas of service and leadership but we are all in a place, the gravity of which neither North Carolina nor the world has experienced. The status of this pandemic and its impact on our courts will evolve week to week or day to day. It will take all of us to successfully respond to the coronavirus pandemic, making sure our court leaders, personnel, and the public are at the least amount of risk to exposure to the coronavirus. Safety for all is paramount.

While, at this time, our courthouses must remain open to accept filings and address emergency / safety situations, the spirit of my order is to drastically

reduce the foot traffic in all of our courthouses across the state. The public’s

minimal presence in our courts will help reduce community transmission of COVID-19 among citizens and will further protect our Judicial Branch employees who still must interact with members of the public about matters that fall within the exceptions to my order. Put simply, it cannot be business as usual for our court system. Non-essential court functions that cannot be accomplished through the use of remote technology must be postponed.

NCAOC is working to compile responses to a number of frequently asked questions it is receiving, but I wanted to cover some of them here. For at least the next 30 days:

  1. In-person meetings must be postponed or cancelled to the fullest extent possible.
  2. When cases or hearings cannot be postponed for the next 30 days, remote technologies should be utilized as authorized by law and to the fullest extent possible.
  3. Matters before the Clerks of Superior Court:

Subject to health precautions, involuntary commitment hearings, guardianship hearings, and pressing estate administration matters should be conducted.

Other matters before the clerk, such as foreclosures and other special proceedings, must be postponed.

4. Matters before Magistrates:

Magistrates must conduct initial appearances and, subject to health precautions, should continue to perform weddings.

Small claims proceedings, including summary ejectments and money owed, must be postponed.

5. District and Superior Court:

All civil and criminal district and superior court matters that are not subject to the exceptions in my order, including traffic court, must be postponed.

To assist you in your local communication efforts, I am attaching to this email a Word version of the plan that Wake County officials have established to implement my directives. I recognize that there will be more than one way to meet those directives and that there will be some local variations in light of county needs and conditions on the ground. However, the Wake County plan is measured and thorough, and I encourage other districts to use it as a model, particularly with respect to the level of specificity that it contains.

I will work as quickly as possible to make any necessary conforming amendments to my March 16th order. At this time, I have not yet entered an order extending statutes of limitations or filing deadlines, but I am considering the most appropriate actions to take in that regard. As with past adverse weather events, any order I enter will likely have a retroactive effective date.

As you implement changes to close court sessions as described in my order and this email, please remember to take care of the following two actions:

  1. Report closings to the Help Desk as you would any other court session closing, such as during an adverse weather event. The Help Desk is available around the clock for you at 919-890-2407. As a reminder, by order of the Supreme Court, all Senior Resident Superior Court Judges and Chief District Court Judges, or their designees, are to report any cancellation or delay of, or early and unscheduled end to, their respective court sessions to the NCAOC. We highly recommend that one person be designated to report all superior court and district court closings. You may want to consider your COOP leader for this role.
  2. Over the next 30 days, as you enter local administrative orders or other plans for court operations, or if you disseminate news releases to your local media or on social media, please email them to the Communications Office at webrequests@nccourts.org so that they may be shared on your county pages on the Judicial Branch’s public website.

We are also aware that there are numerous questions about employee status, leave time, and a host of issues around employees performing these duties. Rest assured that we are working to address these matters and will have updates for you this week.

Our work to stop the spread of the coronavirus will be continuous. As in all matters, Director Wooten, the NCAOC staff and I are here for you and please always feel free to contact us. We well recognize that these measures will cause more demands on your time and limited resources. We are prepared to request additional funding as we assess our court-wide needs in response to the pandemic.

Thank you in advance for your attention to these matters, and for going above and beyond in your service to North Carolina. I am grateful to each of you. Please

additional Judicial Branch staff and local stakeholders.

CARES Act Section 40242020-06-23T10:35:05-04:00

H. R. 748—212
is 30 days after the date on which the borrower provides the tenant with a notice to
vacate; and
(2) may not issue a notice to vacate under paragraph (1) until after the expiration of the
forbearance.
(f) DEFINITIONS.—In this section:
(1) APPLICABLE PROPERTY.—The term ‘‘applicable property’’, with respect to a Federally backed
multifamily mortgage loan, means the residential multifamily property against which the mortgage
loan is secured by a lien.
(2) FEDERALLY BACKED MULTIFAMILY MORTGAGE LOAN.— The term ‘‘Federally backed multifamily
mortgage loan’’ includes any loan (other than temporary financing such as a construction
loan) that—
(A) is secured by a first or subordinate lien on residen- tial multifamily real property designed
principally for the occupancy of 5 or more families, including any such secured loan, the proceeds
of which are used to prepay or pay off an existing loan secured by the same property;
and
(B) is made in whole or in part, or insured, guaranteed, supplemented, or assisted in any way, by
any officer or agency of the Federal Government or under or in connection with a housing or urban
development program adminis- tered by the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development or a housing
or related program administered by any other such officer or agency, or is purchased or securitized
by the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation or the Fed- eral National Mortgage Association.
(3) MULTIFAMILY BORROWER.—the term ‘‘multifamily bor- rower’’ means a borrower of a residential
mortgage loan that is secured by a lien against a property comprising 5 or more dwelling units.
(4) COVID–19 EMERGENCY.—The term ‘‘COVID–19 emer- gency’’ means the national emergency concerning
the novel coronavirus disease (COVID–19) outbreak declared by the President on March 13, 2020 under
the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.).
(5) COVERED PERIOD.—The term ‘‘covered period’’ means the period beginning on the date of
enactment of this Act and ending on the sooner of—
(A) the termination date of the national emergency concerning the novel coronavirus disease
(COVID–19) out- break declared by the President on March 13, 2020 under the National Emergencies
Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.); or

(B) December 31, 2020.
SEC. 4024. TEMPORARY MORATORIUM ON EVICTION FILINGS.
(a) DEFINITIONS.—In this section:
(1) COVERED DWELLING.—The term ‘‘covered dwelling’’ means a dwelling that—
(A) is occupied by a tenant—
(i) pursuant to a residential lease; or
(ii) without a lease or with a lease terminable under State law; and
(B) is on or in a covered property.
PROPERTY.—The term ‘‘covered property’’
eans any property that—

H. R. 748—213
(A) participates in—
(i) a covered housing program (as defined in section 41411(a) of the Violence Against Women Act of
1994 (34 U.S.C. 12491(a))); or
(ii) the rural housing voucher program under sec- tion 542 of the Housing Act of 1949 (42 U.S.C.
1490r); or
(B) has a—
(i) Federally backed mortgage loan; or
(ii) Federally backed multifamily mortgage loan.
(3) DWELLING.—The term ‘‘dwelling’’—
(A) has the meaning given the term in section 802 of the Fair Housing Act (42 U.S.C. 3602);
and
(B) includes houses and dwellings described in section 803(b) of such Act (42 U.S.C. 3603(b)).
(4) FEDERALLY BACKED MORTGAGE LOAN.—The term ‘‘Feder- ally backed mortgage loan’’ includes any loan
(other than tem- porary financing such as a construction loan) that—
(A) is secured by a first or subordinate lien on residen- tial real property (including individual
units of condomin- iums and cooperatives) designed principally for the occu- pancy of from 1 to 4
families, including any such secured loan, the proceeds of which are used to prepay or pay
off an existing loan secured by the same property; and
(B) is made in whole or in part, or insured, guaranteed, supplemented, or assisted in any way, by
any officer or agency of the Federal Government or under or in connection with a housing or urban
development program adminis- tered by the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development or a housing
or related program administered by any other such officer or agency, or is purchased or securitized
by the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation or the Fed- eral National Mortgage Association.
(5) FEDERALLY BACKED MULTIFAMILY MORTGAGE LOAN.— The term ‘‘Federally backed multifamily
mortgage loan’’ includes any loan (other than temporary financing such as a construction
loan) that—
(A) is secured by a first or subordinate lien on residen- tial multifamily real property designed
principally for the occupancy of 5 or more families, including any such secured loan, the proceeds
of which are used to prepay or pay off an existing loan secured by the same property;
and
(B) is made in whole or in part, or insured, guaranteed, supplemented, or assisted in any way, by
any officer or agency of the Federal Government or under or in connection with a housing or urban
development program adminis- tered by the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development or a housing
or related program administered by any other such officer or agency, or is purchased or securitized
by the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation or the Fed- eral National Mortgage Association.
(b) MORATORIUM.—During the 120-day period beginning on the date of enactment of this Act, the
lessor of a covered dwelling may not—
(1) make, or cause to be made, any filing with the court of jurisdiction to initiate a legal action
to recover possession

H. R. 748—214
of the covered dwelling from the tenant for nonpayment of rent or other fees or charges;
or
(2) charge fees, penalties, or other charges to the tenant related to such nonpayment of rent.
(c) NOTICE.—The lessor of a covered dwelling unit—
(1) may not require the tenant to vacate the covered dwelling unit before the date that is 30 days
after the date on which the lessor provides the tenant with a notice to vacate; and

(2) may not issue a notice to vacate under paragraph (1) until after the expiration of the period
described in subsection (b).
SEC. 4025. PROTECTION OF COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENT.
(a) IN GENERAL.—Neither the Secretary, nor any other actor, department, or agency of the Federal
Government, shall condition the issuance of a loan or loan guarantee under paragraph (1), (2),
or (3) of section 4003(b) of this subtitle on an air carrier’s or eligible business’s
implementation of measures to enter into negotiations with the certified bargaining representative
of a craft or class of employees of the air carrier or eligible business under the Railway Labor
Act (45 U.S.C. 151 et seq.) or the National Labor Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 151 et seq.),
regarding pay or other terms and conditions of employment.
(b) PERIOD OF EFFECT.—With respect to an air carrier or eligible business to which the loan or loan
guarantee is provided under this subtitle, this section shall be in effect with respect to
the air carrier or eligible business beginning on the date on which the air carrier or
eligible business is first issued such loan or loan guarantee and ending on the date that is 1
year after the loan or loan guarantee is no longer outstanding.
SEC. 4026. REPORTS.
(a) DISCLOSURE OF TRANSACTIONS.—Not later than 72 hours after any transaction by the Secretary
under paragraph (1), (2), or (3) of section 4003(b), the Secretary shall publish on the website of
the Department of the Treasury—
(1) a plain-language description of the transaction, including the date of application, date of
application approval, and identity of the counterparty;
(2) the amount of the loan or loan guarantee;
(3) the interest rate, conditions, and any other material or financial terms associated with
the transaction, if applicable; and

(4) a copy of the relevant and final term sheet, if applicable, and contract or other relevant
documentation regarding the transaction.
(b) REPORTS.—
(1) TO CONGRESS.—
(A) IN GENERAL.—In addition to such reports as are required under section 5302(c) of title 31,
United States Code, not later than 7 days after the Secretary makes any loan or loan guarantee
under paragraph (1), (2), or
(3) of section 4003(b), the Secretary shall submit to the Chairmen and Ranking Members of the
Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs and the Committee
Chairmen and Ranking
embers of the Committee on Financial Services and the

CARES Act Affidavit2020-06-23T10:33:06-04:00

SOUTH CAROLINA

U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of South Carolina2020-03-23T11:42:56-04:00

Upcoming Hearings Before Judge Waites

03/18/2020 12:43 PM EDT

 

In an effort to preserve parties’ rights, for the present time, Judge Waites’ court hearings will remain scheduled as previously noticed. However, the goal will be to limit in-person attendance at hearings through the use of telephone and video conference appearances.

  • In Chapter 13 cases, Trustees Stephenson and Wyman currently expect to appear in person or by telephone to make announcements and recommendations at their scheduled hearings and may address other matters, so please continue to timely work with their offices to resolve any scheduled hearings on these dockets.
  • In chapter 7 or 11 cases, counsel should contact chambers directly for any hearing related matters or changes.
  • Pro se parties in all chapters should contact the Courtroom Deputy, Nicole Stalvey (Nicole_Stalvey@scb.uscourts.gov, 803-765-5436), regarding upcoming hearings.

Currently, all chamber guideline requirements remain in force, including the timely filing of requests for continuances, withdrawals, and reports of settlement and the need for filing joint statements of disputes.

  • Upon timely request, Judge Waites intends to liberally grant continuances (through the timely filing of a Request for Continuance event in CM/ECF) or appearances by telephone or video conference (requested by timely email correspondence sent to Chambers) in uncontested matters or contested matters with argument only.
  • For lengthy hearings or contested matters in which a party intends to offer testimony or unstipulated exhibits, counsel should consult with each other and contact chambers well in advance of the scheduled hearing to request a continuance or to determine any changes in the scheduling or the manner of hearing.

Please also be aware that individuals who display virus symptoms or who report contact with others displaying symptoms or those who have travelled to high volume virus areas will not be allowed entry to the courthouse or courtroom by court security officers pursuant to the standing order of the U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina. Therefore, for in person hearings at which, parties and witnesses would ordinarily be expected to attend in person, counsel should contact their clients and witnesses in advance to inquire whether each person meets the entry requirements of the courthouse and certify that neither counsel nor any other necessary attendee has a condition prohibiting entry to the courthouse to chambers by email correspondence no later than 10:00 AM one business day before the hearing.

Any questions by counsel should be addressed to Andrew Powell (Andrew_Powell@scb.uscourts.gov) and Sarah Kistler (Sarah_Kistler@scb.uscourts.gov).

THE SUPREME COURT OF SOUTH CAROLINA2020-03-20T14:31:42-04:00

THE SUPREME COURT OF SOUTH CAROLINA

Pursuant to provisions of Article V, Section 4 of the South Carolina Constitution,

IT IS ORDERED that all evictions currently ordered and scheduled statewide from March 17, 2020, through March 31, 2020, shall be rescheduled for a date not earlier than May 1, 2020.  However, case-by-case exceptions for evictions may be made for matters that involve essential services and/or harm to person or property.

NOTICE FROM THE UNITED STATES TRUSTEE2020-03-20T14:31:18-04:00

NOTICE FROM THE UNITED STATES TRUSTEE CONTINUING ALL

IN-PERSON SECTION 341 MEETINGS SCHEDULED THROUGH APRIL 10, 2020**

Effective immediately, all in-person chapter 7, 12, and 13 section 341 meetings scheduled through April 10, 2020, are hereby continued until a later date to be determined. Section 341 meetings may not proceed during this period except through telephonic or other alternative means not requiring personal appearance by debtors.** Appropriate notice will be provided to parties in accordance with bankruptcy law and rules for any telephonic meetings scheduled during this period.

Meetings already scheduled as telephonic meetings may proceed as scheduled.

**PLEASE NOTE: Until further notice, the Columbia, SC Field Office of the United States Trustee is proceeding with section 341 meetings via teleconference for all meetings scheduled on or after March 23, 2020.

NOTICE OF CHANGE IN MEETINGS OF CREDITORS

From: Office of the United States Trustee, Columbia, SC Field Office Date: March 18, 2020

Re: Teleconference meetings of creditors – mandatory

Effective March 23, 2020, and until further notice, all meetings of creditors scheduled in the District of South Carolina in all chapters will be held by teleconference. The meetings will be held on the date and at the time originally noticed in the cases. Trustees in chapters 7, 12, and 13 cases will contact debtors’ counsel and pro se debtors and supply information regarding that trustee’s procedures for conducting meetings of creditors by teleconference. The United States Trustee’s Columbia Field Office will supply this information in chapter 11 cases.

The method of communicating information to parties by the trustees and by the United States Trustee will be electronic to the extent possible using the email information found in each case. Debtors’ counsel is responsible for

communicating the appropriate teleconference information to their clients.

Debtors’ counsel and their clients are not required to be at the same physical location while a meeting is being conducted.

Creditors and parties in interest desiring to appear at a meeting of creditors should contact the trustee in the case using the information below to obtain information regarding how to attend a meeting by teleconference.

Chapter 7 Trustees

Robert F. Anderson bob@andersonlawfirm.net (803) 252-8600

Janet B. Haigler jhaigler@haiglerlawfirm.com (803) 261-9806

Kevin Campbell kcampbell@campbell-law-firm.com (843) 884-6874

Michelle Vieira trustee@chapter7.email (843) 497-9800

John K. Fort johnkfort@gmail.com (864) 237-8284

Chapter 11

United States Trustee (Columbia Field Office)

USTPRegion04.CO.ECF@usdoj.gov (803) 765-5250

Chapter 12

Kerk Spong kspong@robinsongray.com

(803) 227-1101

Chapter 13 Trustees

Gretchen Holland katherine@upstate13.com (864) 527-3765

Keenan Stephenson dgoldberg@columbia13.com (803) 744-0201

Pamela Simmons-Beasley katherine@chapter13trustee.net (803) 779-5180, ext. 131

James Wyman

  umgarner@charleston13.com

(843) 856-2404

TENNESSEE

United States Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of Tennessee2020-03-20T14:36:35-04:00

Information Regarding Coronavirus Dis 19) and Court Operations

Monday, March 9, 2020

Information Regarding Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) and Court Operations

The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of Tennessee continues to closely monitor the national response to the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) and will be following guidance provided by the Administrative Office of the United States Courts (AO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), available here. At this time there are no changes to normal bankruptcy court operations within the Middle District of Tennessee. Any future changes or updates will be posted on this website and communicated as appropriate.

Please note the following:

If you are required to appear in court and are experiencing any flu-like symptoms, have a fever, or are coughing or sneezing, please contact your attorney before appearing for court or for a meeting of creditors. If you are acting pro se, please contact the court at (615) 736-5584 before appearing for court. For meetings of creditors, please contact the United States Trustee’s Office at (615) 736- 2254.

If you have recently traveled from an area with widespread COVID-19 contagion and you have symptoms of the disease (fever, cough, or shortness of breath), please contact your healthcare provider for details on how to proceed with proper medical care.

Additional COVID-19 Resources and Updates:

National and International:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html)

World Health Organization

Tennessee:

Tennessee Department of Health (https://www.tn.gov/health/cedep/ncov.html)

COVID-19 Public Information Number 877-857-2945 Available 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. CST Daily

United States Bankruptcy Court Eastern District of Tennessee2020-04-02T11:33:36-04:00

Notice from the United States Bankruptcy Court

for the Eastern District of Tennessee in Response to COVID-19 Virus

Concerning the evolving and expanding public health considerations related to the COVID-19 virus, and upon consideration of the information available at this time, the court has made the following determinations in an effort to balance the needs of the bar and public with their safety and that of the court staff serving them:

  • Open hearings as presently scheduled will continue to be held and future hearings may continue to be scheduled;
  • Telephonic appearances and participation at court hearings will be broadly available to both counsel and parties to limit personal contact in court spaces;
  • The court will be receptive to motions for mutually agreed upon continuances of hearings and counsel are encouraged to do so when practical and appropriate;
  • The court strongly urges the filing of motions to continue in situations where the health of individuals is or may be at risk; and
  • The notice attached as an exhibit will be posted on public doors.

Those wishing to participate telephonically in a scheduled hearing should contact chambers of the presiding judge for guidance and instruction on how to dial in to a hearing. Contact information is available under “Judges’ Information” on our public webpage www.tneb.uscourts.gov.

It is anticipated that during the course of this public health emergency the court may find  itself operating with reduced staff. While our goal remains to effectively serve the bar and public, we appreciate your patience as resources may be stretched. As the situation with the COVID-19 virus evolves, so will our court’s response to it. Any additional changes will be communicated as soon as they are determined.

Marcia Phillips Parsons

Chief United States Bankruptcy Judge March 13, 2020

NOTICE FROM THE UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT

FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF TENNESSEE

PLEASE

DO NOT ENTER IF

  • You have been diagnosed with or have had contact with anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID- 19; or
  • You have been asked to self-quarantine by any hospital or health agency; or
  • You are exhibiting cold or flu symptoms; or
  • You have traveled to CHINA, IRAN, ITALY, or SOUTH KOREA within the past 14 days or you reside or have had close contact with someone who has travelled to one of these countries within the last 14 days.

IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS OR NEED MORE INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT YOUR ATTORNEY OR THE BANKRUPTCY CLERK’S OFFICE AT:

(423) 752-5163

Chattanooga & Winchester

(423) 787-0113

Greeneville

(865) 545-4279

Knoxville

The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of Tennessee2020-04-02T11:43:54-04:00

Information Regarding Coronavirus Dis 19) and Court Operations

Monday, March 9, 2020

Information Regarding Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) and Court Operations

The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of Tennessee continues to closely monitor the national response to the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) and will be following guidance provided by the Administrative Office of the United States Courts (AO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), available here. At this time there are no changes to normal bankruptcy court operations within the Middle District of Tennessee. Any future changes or updates will be posted on this website and communicated as appropriate.

Please note the following:

If you are required to appear in court and are experiencing any flu-like symptoms, have a fever, or are coughing or sneezing, please contact your attorney before appearing for court or for a meeting of creditors. If you are acting pro se, please contact the court at (615) 736-5584 before appearing for court. For meetings of creditors, please contact the United States Trustee’s Office at (615) 736- 2254.

If you have recently traveled from an area with widespread COVID-19 contagion and you have symptoms of the disease (fever, cough, or shortness of breath), please contact your healthcare provider for details on how to proceed with proper medical care.

Additional COVID-19 Resources and Updates:

National and International:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html)

World Health Organization

Tennessee:

Tennessee Department of Health (https://www.tn.gov/health/cedep/ncov.html)

COVID-19 Public Information Number 877-857-2945 Available 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. CST Daily

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The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee2020-03-20T14:37:19-04:00

Notice from the United States Bankruptcy Court

for the Eastern District of Tennessee in Response to COVID-19 Virus

Concerning the evolving and expanding public health considerations related to the COVID-19 virus, and upon consideration of the information available at this time, the court has made the following determinations in an effort to balance the needs of the bar and public with their safety and that of the court staff serving them:

  • Open hearings as presently scheduled will continue to be held and future hearings may continue to be scheduled;
  • Telephonic appearances and participation at court hearings will be broadly available to both counsel and parties to limit personal contact in court spaces;
  • The court will be receptive to motions for mutually agreed upon continuances of hearings and counsel are encouraged to do so when practical and appropriate;
  • The court strongly urges the filing of motions to continue in situations where the health of individuals is or may be at risk; and
  • The notice attached as an exhibit will be posted on public doors.

Those wishing to participate telephonically in a scheduled hearing should contact chambers of the presiding judge for guidance and instruction on how to dial in to a hearing. Contact information is available under “Judges’ Information” on our public webpage www.tneb.uscourts.gov.

It is anticipated that during the course of this public health emergency the court may find  itself operating with reduced staff. While our goal remains to effectively serve the bar and public, we appreciate your patience as resources may be stretched. As the situation with the COVID-19 virus evolves, so will our court’s response to it. Any additional changes will be communicated as soon as they are determined.

Marcia Phillips Parsons

Chief United States Bankruptcy Judge March 13, 2020

NOTICE FROM THE UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT

FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF TENNESSEE

PLEASE

DO NOT ENTER IF

  • You have been diagnosed with or have had contact with anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID- 19; or
  • You have been asked to self-quarantine by any hospital or health agency; or
  • You are exhibiting cold or flu symptoms; or
  • You have traveled to CHINA, IRAN, ITALY, or SOUTH KOREA within the past 14 days or you reside or have had close contact with someone who has travelled to one of these countries within the last 14 days.

IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS OR NEED MORE INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT YOUR ATTORNEY OR THE BANKRUPTCY CLERK’S OFFICE AT:

(423) 752-5163

Chattanooga & Winchester

(423) 787-0113

Greeneville

(865) 545-4279

Knoxville

THE SUPREME COURT OF TENNESSEE AT NASHVILLE2020-03-26T09:53:04-04:00

IN RE: COVID-19 PANDEMIC

No. ADM2020-00428

ORDER CONTINUING SUSPENSION OF IN-PERSON COURT PROCEEDINGS AND EXTENSION OF DEADLINES

On March 13, 2020, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Chief Justice of the Tennessee Supreme Court declared a state of emergency for the Judicial Branch of Tennessee government and activated a Continuity of Operations Plan for the courts of Tennessee. See Tenn. Const. Art. VI, § 1; Tenn. Code Ann. §§ 16-3-501 to 16-3-504 (2009); Moore-Pennoyer v. State, 515 S.W.3d 271, 276-77 (Tenn. 2017); Tenn. Sup. Ct. R.

  1. This state of emergency constitutes a “disaster” for purposes of Tenn. Sup. Ct. R. 49 and Tenn. Code Ann. § 28-1-116. In light of ongoing concerns, the Tennessee Supreme Court hereby continues the suspension of in-person court proceedings and the extension of deadlines as set forth in this order. We again emphasize that the local and state courts of the State of Tennessee are open and will remain open under all circumstances, subject to the provisions of this order.

Under the constitutional, statutory, and inherent authority of the Tennessee Supreme Court, we adopt the following provisions. All in-person proceedings in all state and local courts in Tennessee, including but not limited to municipal, juvenile, general sessions, trial, and appellate courts, shall be suspended from the close of business on Friday, March 13, 2020, through Thursday, April 30, 2020, subject to the exceptions below.

Exceptions to this suspension of in-person court proceedings include, but are not limited to:

    • Proceedings necessary to protect constitutional rights of criminal defendants, including bond-related matters, preliminary hearings for incarcerated individuals, and plea agreements for incarcerated individuals
    • Proceedings related to relief from abuse, including but not limited to orders of protection
    • Proceedings related to statutory order of protection hearings after entry of an ex parte order as necessary to satisfy any due process concerns

03/25/2020

  • Proceedings related to emergency child custody or visitation orders
  • Proceedings related to the voluntary surrender of parental rights
  • Settlements involving a minor or a person with a disability
  • Department of Children’s Services emergency matters related to child safety, placement, permanency, or federal funding for children in foster care
  • Proceedings related to petitions for temporary injunctive relief
  • Proceedings related to emergency mental health orders
  • Proceedings related to emergency protection of elderly or vulnerable persons
  • Proceedings directly related to the COVID-19 public health emergency
  • Other exceptions as approved by the Chief Justice

The presiding judge or the designee of the presiding judge of each judicial district is authorized to determine the manner in which in-person court proceedings for the exceptions listed above are to be conducted. Other exceptions to the suspension of in-person court proceedings must be approved by the Chief Justice. Any permitted in-court proceedings shall be limited to attorneys, parties, witnesses, security officers, and other necessary persons, as determined by the trial judge. Judges and their staff shall ensure that social distancing and other such measures are strictly observed. For purposes of implementing procedural matters during this time, the provisions of Rule 18(c) of the Rules of the Tennessee Supreme Court are suspended to allow judges to issue general orders.

Judges are charged with the responsibility of ensuring that core constitutional functions and rights are protected. Additionally, court clerks are charged with ensuring that court functions continue. See Tenn. Code Ann. §§ 18-1-101 (2009); 18-1-105 (Supp. 2019). Nevertheless, all judges and court clerks should minimize in-person contact by utilizing available technologies, including alternative means of filing, teleconferencing, email, and video conferencing.

Any Tennessee state or local rule, criminal or civil, that impedes a judge’s or court clerk’s ability to utilize available technologies to limit in-person contact is suspended through Thursday, April 30, 2020. See, e.g., Tenn. R. Civ. P. 43.01. With respect to plea agreements for non-incarcerated individuals, this suspension expressly applies to those provisions of Tenn. R. Crim. P. 11 which otherwise would require the proceeding to be in person in open court. See, e.g., Tenn. R. Crim. P. 11(b)(1) and (2), 11(c)(2)(A).

The presiding judge or the designee of the presiding judge of each judicial district shall develop a written plan to affirmatively address issues regarding the incarceration of nonviolent offenders in furtherance of efforts to reduce the jail population, including but not limited to bond reductions or eliminations, deferred sentences, and suspended sentences. The presiding judge or the designee of the presiding judge of each judicial district shall submit its plan to the Administrative Office of the Courts by the close of

business on Monday, March 30, 2020, absent an extension granted by the Chief Justice.

Judges’ offices and court clerks’ offices may limit in-person contact with the public during the period of suspension, but must remain functional. If it becomes necessary to close judges’ or court clerks’ physical offices during the period of suspension, these offices shall remain accessible by telephone, email and fax to the extent possible during regular business hours. If available, drop boxes should be used for conventionally filed documents.

This order expressly encourages and does not prohibit court proceedings by telephone, video, teleconferencing, email, or other means that do not involve in-person contact. This order does not affect courts’ consideration of matters that can be resolved without in-person proceedings. Although some non-emergency matters will need to be rescheduled, judges are to continue to resolve matters that do not require in-person court proceedings. Court clerks are to work cooperatively and at the direction of the presiding judge of each judicial district to fulfill the clerks’ obligation to facilitate continuing court function.

Deadlines set forth in court rules, statutes, ordinances, administrative rules, or otherwise that are set to expire during the period from Friday, March 13, 2020, through Tuesday, May 5, 2020, are hereby extended through Wednesday, May 6, 2020. Statutes of limitations and statutes of repose that would otherwise expire during the period from Friday, March 13, 2020, through Tuesday, May 5, 2020, are hereby extended through

Wednesday, May 6, 2020. See Tenn. Code Ann. § 28-1-116 (2017). Deadlines, statutes of limitations, and statutes of repose that are not set to expire during the period from Friday, March 13, 2020, through Tuesday, May 5, 2020, are not extended or tolled by this order.

With regard to notarizing documents at this time, attorneys and judges are encouraged to utilize the “Online Notary Public Act,” Tenn. Code Ann. § 8-16-301, et seq., and the regulations promulgated by the Secretary of State at Sec. of State, Tenn. R. and Reg. 1360-07-03-.01. Additionally, with regard to court filings, declarations under penalty of perjury may be used as an alternative to a notary.

Given the increasing economic issues caused by this pandemic, no judge, clerk, or other court official shall take any action to effectuate an eviction, ejectment, or other displacement from a residence during the effective dates of this order based upon the failure to make a rent, loan, or other similar payment absent extraordinary circumstances as determined by a judge in a court of competent jurisdiction. Nothing in this order affects the obligations, terms, or conditions for payment under existing contracts. Judges also are encouraged to work with court clerks and local law enforcement to develop policies severely limiting or eliminating any new garnishments during this time.

Orders of protection and temporary injunctions that would otherwise expire during the period from Friday, March 13, 2020, through Tuesday, May 5, 2020, are hereby extended through Wednesday, May 6, 2020.

This order applies statewide to all courts and court clerks’ offices except administrative courts within the Executive Branch and federal courts and federal court clerks’ offices located in Tennessee.

Under the terms of this order, the courts of Tennessee remain open, consistent with the Judicial Branch’s obligation to mitigate the risks associated with COVID-19. Judges should work with local law enforcement and other county officials to ensure that, to the extent possible, courthouses remain accessible to carry out essential constitutional functions and time-sensitive proceedings.

This order is intended to be interpreted broadly for protection of the public from risks associated with COVID-19.

It is so ORDERED.

THE SUPREME COURT OF TENNESSEE2020-03-20T14:34:19-04:00

IN THE SUPREME COURT OF TENNESSEE

AT NASHVILLE

IN RE:    COVID-19 PANDEMIC

No. ADM2020-00428

ORDER SUSPENDING IN-PERSON COURT PROCEEDINGS

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Chief Justice of the Tennessee Supreme Court hereby declares a state of emergency for the Judicial Branch of Tennessee government and activates the following Continuity of Operations Plan for the courts of Tennessee. See Tenn. Const. Art. VI, § 1; Tenn. Code Ann. §§ 16-3-501 to 16-3-504 (2009); Moore-Pennoyer v. State, 515 S.W.3d 271, 276-77 (Tenn. 2017); Tenn. Sup. Ct. R.

  1. First and foremost, the local and state courts of the State of Tennessee are open and will remain open under all circumstances, subject to the provisions of this order.

Under the constitutional, statutory, and inherent authority of the Tennessee Supreme Court, we adopt the following provisions. All in-person proceedings in all state and local courts in Tennessee, including but not limited to municipal, juvenile, general sessions, trial, and appellate courts, are suspended from the close of business on Friday, March 13, 2020 through Tuesday, March 31, 2020, subject to the exceptions below.

Exceptions to this suspension of in-person court proceedings include, but are not limited to:

    • Proceedings necessary to protect constitutional rights of criminal defendants, including bond-related matters and plea agreements for incarcerated individuals
    • Civil and criminal jury trials that are in progress as of March 13, 2020
    • Proceedings related to relief from abuse, including but not limited to orders of protection
    • Proceedings related to emergency child custody orders
    • Department of Children’s Services emergency matters related to child protection
    • Proceedings related to petitions for temporary injunctive relief
    • Proceedings related to emergency mental health orders
    • Proceedings related to emergency protection of elderly or vulnerable persons
    • Proceedings directly related to the COVID-19 public health emergency
    • Other exceptions as approved by the Chief Justice

03/13/2020

The presiding judge or the designee of the presiding judge of each judicial district is authorized to determine the manner in which in-person court proceedings for the exceptions listed above are to be conducted. Other exceptions to the suspension of in-person court proceedings must be approved by the Chief Justice. Any permitted in-court proceedings shall be limited to attorneys, parties, witnesses, security officers, and other necessary persons, as determined by the trial judge.

Judges are charged with the responsibility of ensuring that core constitutional functions and rights are protected. Additionally, court clerks are charged with ensuring that court functions continue. See Tenn. Code Ann. §§ 18-1-101 (2009); 18-1-105 (Supp. 2019). Nevertheless, all judges and court clerks are urged to limit in-person courtroom contact as much as possible by utilizing available technologies, including alternative means of filing, teleconferencing, email, and video conferencing. Any Tennessee state or local rule, criminal or civil, that impedes a judge’s or court clerk’s ability to utilize available technologies to limit in-person contact is suspended until March 31, 2020. See, e.g., Tenn. R. Civ. P. 43.01.

If it becomes necessary to close judges’ offices or court clerks’ offices during the period of suspension, these offices shall remain accessible by telephone and email to the extent possible during their regular business hours. If available, drop boxes should be used for conventionally filed documents.

This order expressly does not prohibit court proceedings by telephone, video, teleconferencing, email, or other means that do not involve in-person contact. This order does not affect courts’ consideration of matters that can be resolved without in-person proceedings.

Deadlines set forth in court rules, statutes, ordinances, administrative rules, or otherwise that are set to expire between March 13 and March 31, 2020 are hereby extended through April 6, 2020. Statutes of limitations and statutes of repose that would otherwise expire during the period between March 13 and April 6, 2020 are hereby extended through April 6, 2020. See Tenn. Code Ann. § 28-1-116 (2017). Deadlines, statutes of limitations, and statutes of repose that are not set to expire between March 13 and April 6, 2020 are not extended or tolled by this order.

Orders of protection and temporary injunctions that would otherwise expire between March 13 and March 31, 2020 are hereby extended until April 6, 2020.

This order applies statewide to all courts and court clerks’ offices except administrative courts within the Executive Branch and federal courts and federal court clerks’ offices located in Tennessee.

Under the terms of this order, the courts of Tennessee remain open, consistent with the Judicial Branch’s obligation to mitigate the risks associated with COVID-19.

This order is intended to be interpreted broadly for protection of the public from risks associated with COVID-19.

It is so ORDERED.

Tennessee Middle Judge Walker2020-04-02T11:44:51-04:00

CH. 7 & 11 TUESDAY DOCKET PROCEDURES after March 25, 2020

JUDGE WALKER’S CH. 7 & 11 TUESDAY DOCKET PROCEDURES

Due to exigent circumstances created by COVID-19, the following procedures apply in Chapter 7 and Chapter 11 matters after March 25, 2020:

  • Pursuant to the Supplemental Administrative Order 20-5 (paragraph 4),

Judge Walker’s Tuesday docket will commence at 10 a.m.

  • If an agreement has been reached between the parties, an Agreed Order submitted by noon on Monday will cancel the hearing.
  • Announcements will be taken at 10 a.m. via AT&T conference line. The call in information is: Phone number 888-363-4749 Access Code 7250422.
  • Any matter that requires lengthy argument or presentation of evidence will

be heard at 1:00 p.m. via CourtSolutions (see Judge Walker’s website for

instructions)

  • Motions for Relief from Stay that have no opposition will not be heard. The Movant shall submit the appropriate Order.

REMINDER: The Courtroom Deputy and Chambers Staff are prohibited from giving legal advice. Advising parties on the need to appear on any matter, or how to proceed on a motion, application, or any pleading is legal advice. The Court will strive to assist attorneys in this difficult time, but will not suspend

ethical considerations in order to do so.

Tennessee Middle Instructions for Hearings Before Judge Randal S Mashburn2020-04-02T11:49:50-04:00

Instructions for Hearings before Judge Randal S. Mashburn

During Week of March 23, 2020

Pursuant to Administrative Order 20-5, no in-person hearings are currently being conducted for bankruptcy matters in the Middle District of Tennessee. For the upcoming week, matters scheduled before Judge Mashburn will be handled as follows:

1. All matters set on the regular Wednesday consolidated Chapter 13 hearing docket on March 25, 2020, will be heard in accordance with Administrative Order 20-5, which includes the following call-in information:

Call-In Number: 1-888-363-4749

Access Code: 6926390#

2. For all other matters set for the week of March 23, 2020, before Judge Mashburn, instructions regarding telephonic hearings will be set forth in a docket

order relating to the specific case.

Tennessee Middle Administrative Order 20-5 USBC Telephonic Hearings2020-04-02T11:42:57-04:00

MAR 2 0 2020

UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT MIDDLE DISTRICT OF TENNESSEE

INRE:

SUPPLEMENTAL ORDER RELATING TO COURT OPERATIONS

DUE TO CIRCUMSTANCES CAUSED BY COVID-19

ADMINISTRATIVE ORDER 20-5

This Order is entered due to the continuing exigent circumstances created by COVID-19 and based on the health and safety concerns referenced in Administrative Order 20-4.

  1. On an indefinite basis until further order, there will be no in-person appearances in Bankruptcy Court hearings and conferences in Nashville, Cookeville, and Columbia. All hearings will be conducted telephonically or through some other type of electronic means as directed by the Court.
  2. The regular consolidated weekly Chapter 13 hearing dockets, as well as any regular monthly hearing dockets in Cookeville and Columbia will be conducted via telephonic call-in arrangement. The call-in number for all such consolidated dockets wiJ be 1-888-363-4749, and a single access code (6926390#) will be used for those dockets. If that process changes, notice will be disseminated as soon as practicable.
  3. With regard to any hearings other than the regular consolidated weekly Chapter 13 hearing dockets and the hearings set for Cookeville and Columbia, all hearings will also be conducted in some electronic manner – either telephonic or video, based on the circumstances of the particular matter and the preferences of the presiding judge. That includes the regular weekly Chapter 7/11 motion dockets, pre-trial conferences, Subchapter V status conferences, specially set hearings, trials, and every other hearing, conference or meeting scheduled by the Court. The type of process to be used in those situations may vary, and instructions for each judge for upcoming hearings will be posted on the Court’s website. Also, docket orders may sometimes be entered for specific matters providing additional instructions to address certain situations. Therefore, it is incumbent on counsel and parties to check the website and docket entries frequently to determine how the Court will be handling all matters other than the consolidated Chapter 13  dockets and Columbia/Cookeville hearings.
  4. In order to accommodate the use of telephonic and other electronic processes that may be used, the start time for the regular Tuesday Chapter 7/11 motion dockets will be altered. Judge Harrison’s regular weekly hearings will start at 9:00 a.m., Judge Mashburn’s hearings will start at 9:30 a.m., and Judge Walker’s hearings will start at 10:00 a.m. Some matters may be specially set at other times. Counsel will be expected to advise the judges at the beginning of each regular motion docket if they have hearings before more than one judge on the same morning so that efforts can be made to coordinate the timing to avoid an attorney needing to be “online” simultaneously in different hearings.
  5. If counsel anticipate requiring testimony or use of a substantial number of exhibits for a hearing set on a regular motion docket, they are encouraged to confer in advance about stipulations and to also consider requesting that the matter be specially set at a different time. This will allow the Court to consider the best electronic option to suit the circumstances of the particular hearing.
  6. As indicated in Administrative Order 20-4, Local Bankruptcy Rule 9014-l(e) dealing with first-time continuances by agreement has been altered to allow the confirmation hearing in a Chapter 13 case to be continued multiple times by agreement so long as the continued hearing date is not later than 120 days after the filing of the petition. The local rule is now further modified to allow multiple continuances by agreement for any motion to dismiss a Chapter 13 case filed by the Chapter 13 Trustee so long as the hearing is not later than 120 days after the filing of the motion. In the event of a continuance meeting that criteria, the Chapter 13 Trustee may make the announcement at the scheduled hearing or provide notice of the continuance to the Court by including it on the “no call” list provided in advance of the hearing.
  7. Until the process is altered by further order, the Court will continue the procedure set forth in Administrative Order 20-4 dealing with hearings on motions to dismiss in a Chapter 13 case based on a failure of the debtor to comply with 11 U.S.C. Sec. 1326(a)(l)(a) due to making the first payment later than 30 days from the bankruptcy filing. Such motions will be denied if (a) the initial payment was made within 60 days of filing, (b) all payments are current at the time of the hearing on the motion to dismiss, and (c) the debtor has filed an affidavit or declaration under penalty of perjury explaining the reason for the initial untimely payment and such explanation is satisfactory to the Court.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

Tennessee Eastern Standing Order SO-20-06 USDC re Public Health Emergency2020-04-02T11:39:40-04:00

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF TENNESSEE

IN RE: COURT OPERATIONS UNDER )

THE EXIGENT CIRCUMSTANCES )

CREATED BY COVID-19 )

SO-20-06

STANDING ORDER

Given that the World Health Organization has declared the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) a pandemic, that the Governor of the State of Tennessee has declared a public health emergency throughout the state in response to the spread of COVID-19 and given that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other public health authorities have advised the taking of precautions to reduce the possibility of exposure to the virus and slow the spread of the disease, it is hereby ORDERED that, effective immediately:

  1. The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee will remain open for business, subject to the following limitations. Staff in the Clerk’s Office will be available by telephone, mail will be received, and intake desks will remain open for filings. Electronic filings may still be made through the CM/ECF system. The public is encouraged to continue utilizing Court services while following all applicable public health guidelines.
  2. Subject to any exceptions identified below, all civil and criminal jury trials scheduled to commence from March 16, 2020 through April 24, 2020, before any district or magistrate judge in any division in  the Eastern District of  Tennessee are CONTINUED, except as otherwise ordered by the presiding judge. The Court may issue other orders concerning further continuances as necessary and appropriate.
  3. With regard to criminal jury trials, due to the Court’s reduced ability to obtain an adequate spectrum of jurors and the effect of the above public health recommendations on the availability of counsel and Court staff to be present in the courtroom, the risks posed to the jurors 3:nd the public, the time period of the continuances implemented by this Order will be excluded under the Speedy Trial Act, as the Court specifically finds that the ends of justice served by ordering the continuances outweigh the best interests of the public and any defendant’s right to a speedy trial, pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 3161(h)(7)(A). Should any speedy trial motion or challenges associated with the findings in this District-wide Order be filed in any individual case, the presiding judge is encouraged to make any necessary case-specific findings in the record of such case.
  4. Although jury trials are continued through April 24, 2020, cases not scheduled for a jury trial during this period will continue as scheduled. This Order does not otherwise impact case-specific deadlines contained in each case’s Scheduling Order. Other case proceedings will continue to take place in the ordinary course of business. However, to the extent practicable, oral proceedings will be conducted by telephone or video conferencing.
  5. All grand jury proceedings in Greeneville and Chattanooga shall be suspended through April 24, 2020; this Standing Order does not affect the present Grand Jury scheduled for Knoxville on March 17, 2020 nor does it affect the future scheduling of the Knoxville Grand Jury; further, the United States Attorney is permitted to continue to utilize the grand jury in the Knoxville Division of this Court as scheduled and to have it consider matters arising in all divisions of this Court, in order to ensure that the consideration and investigation of criminal activities may continue without interruption across the District.
  6. All civil trials that are scheduled to commence without a jury will be handled at the discretion of the presidingjudge based on the case’s particular facts and circumstances.
  7. All misdemeanor, traffic and petty offense dockets (also known as the CYB docket) scheduled in all Divisions of this Court through April 24, 2020, are hereby CONTINUED. New dates for the cases scheduled on such dockets shall be reset without the need to file any motions with the Court. The Court anticipates that each Division of this Court will issue their own individual orders identifying the names and/or dates of the specific dockets that are covered by the instant District-wide General Order.
  8. All non-essential judicial activities such as courthouse tours and naturalization ceremonies shall be canceled until further order of the Court.
  9. The Court encourages parties and counsel to report, prior to personally appearing in Court, any concerns they have about health issues or relevant symptoms so that the Court can make informed decisions in the interest of justice and in the interest of the public’s health.
  10. It is further ordered that the following persons shall not enter any United States Courthouse in the Eastern District of Tennessee: any person who has been in China, South Korea, Japan, Italy, Iran, and Europe within the past 14 days from the date of the entry of this Standing Order or from the date in which such person is seeking entry into the Courthouse; or persons who reside or have been in contact with someone who has been in one of the countries listed above within the past 14 days; or persons who have been asked to self-quarantine by any doctor, hospital, heath agency or other healthcare provider; or persons who have been diagnosed with, or have had contact with, anyone who has been diag nosed wit h COV ID- 1 9; o r perso ns exper ie ncing fever , coug h o r sho rtness of breat h. To ensure the imp le mentatio n of this provis io n of this Standing Order , the Unite d States Marshal, his Deputies, a nd the Co urt Securit y Officers are accordin gly DIRECTED to appropriate ly scree n any vis ito rs en tering the Un ited States Courth ouses in the Eastern Dis tri ct of Te nnessee co ns iste nt with these vis itor restr ictions and shall deny entry to anyone attempting to enter in vio lati o n of this Or der.
  11. As dic tate d by the ever-c hanging circumstances and the anticipated in crea se in co mm unit y spread of the corona viru s, the Co urt may issue further responses as the s itu atio n evo lves, inc lu din g possible e xtens ions of the tim eframes set fo rth i n th is O rder.
Tennessee Eastern Notice Regarding Telephonic Hearings2020-04-02T11:35:39-04:00

New Notice

Regarding Court Operations during COVID-19 Virus Outbreak

(Hearings to Be Conducted Telephonically Beginning Tuesday, March 17, 2020)

On March 13, 2020, the Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee issued a notice advising that “open hearings as presently scheduled will continue to be held.” New information having been considered, the court has determined now:

Beginning March 17, 2020, all hearings noticed for the Bankruptcy Court in the Eastern District of Tennessee will be held telephonically unless arrangements have been made otherwise with the chambers staff of the presiding judge. This applies to all divisions of the court.

The hearings will be held via AT &T call-in numbers. Information on how to call in and participate is posted on the court’s website at www.tneb.uscourts.gov.

The court will continue to be open and staff will continue to be present. Future hearings should continue to be scheduled and noticed as in the past in accordance with the provisions of E.D. Tenn. LBR 9013-1. However, the following additional statement must be prominently displayed in the hearing notice:

Given the current public health crisis, hearings may be telephonic only. Please check the court’s website www.tneb.uscourts.gov prior to the hearing for instructions on whether to appear in person or by telephone. Information on how to call in and participate is also posted on the website.

This Notice does NOT apply to 11 U.S.C. § 341 meetings of creditors or any other requirements of the United States Trustee.

We appreciate your patience as we work through this new procedure during this difficult time. Counsel may facilitate the telephonic hearings by contacting

opposing counsel in advance of hearings to resolve any issues that can be resolved. If you have any questions about a specific case, please contact the appropriate judge’s chambers.

Thank you for your cooperation. We are committed to continuing the work of the court in a manner that is consistent with public health guidelines for the health and safety of the public and our staff.

Marcia Phillips Parsons

Chief United States Bankruptcy Judge March 15, 2020

Tennessee Eastern Instructions for Telephonic Hearings2020-04-02T11:32:09-04:00

Information for Participating in Hearing by Telephone

  • At least 10 minutes before the time of the hearing, dial the AT&T (toll-free) teleconferencing number for the presiding judge as listed below.
  • Enter the access code associated with the number.
  • Place the telephone on mute, but do not place the call on hold.
  • Wait until your case is called or announcements are accepted by court before speaking. Each time you speak, identify yourself for the record.
  • Pursuant to E.D. Tenn. LBR 5073-1, you are prohibited from recording or broadcasting the proceedings conducted by the United States Bankruptcy Court.

Chief Judge Marcia Phillips Parsons

Telephone (877) 336-1839 Access Code 8354354

Judge Shelley D. Rucker

Telephone (877) 336-1829 Access Code 4289323

Judge Suzanne H. Bauknight

Telephone (877) 336-1828 Access Code 4941759

Judge Nicholas W. Whittenburg

Telephone (877) 810-9415 Access Code 1138859

Middle Tennessee Instructions for Hearings Before Chief Judge Marian F Harrison2020-04-02T11:48:49-04:00

Instructions for Hearings before Chief Judge Marian F. Harrison

Pursuant to Administrative Order 20-5, no in-person hearings are currently being conducted for bankruptcy matters in the Middle District of Tennessee. Matters scheduled before Judge Harrison will be handled as follows:

1. All matters set on the regular Wednesday consolidated Chapter 13 hearing docket, will be heard in accordance with Administrative Order 20-5, which includes the following call-in information:

Call-In Number: 1-888-363-4749

Access Code: 6926390#

2. Unless otherwise indicated, for all other chapter 7, chapter 11 or expedited/emergency matters, before Judge Harrison, instructions regarding telephonic or video hearings will be set forth in a docket order relating to the

specific case.

VIRGINIA

UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF VIRGINIA2020-03-20T14:50:31-04:00

UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF VIRGINIA

Richmond Division

ORDER CONCERNING BANKRUPTCY COURT OPERATIONS UNDER THE EXIGENT CIRCUMSTANCES CREATED BY THE OUTBREAK OF CORONAVIRUS DISEASE 2019 (COVID-19) FOR THE RICHMOND DIVISION ONLY

In response to the current public health crisis posed by the recent outbreak of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), it is

ORDERED that the following Protocol in Response to Public Health Emergency is

ADOPTED on an interim emergency basis effective March 16, 2020 through and including April 30, 2020; and it is further

ORDERED that the Clerk of the Court shall post this Standing Order on the Court’s website and distribute a copy all registered CM/ECF users by email.

ENTERED: March 13, 2020 /s/ Kevin R. Huennekens                           

KEVIN R. HUENNEKENS

United States Bankruptcy Judge

     /s/ Keith L. Phillips KEITH L. PHILLIPS

United States Bankruptcy Judge

UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF VIRGINIA

Richmond Division

PROTOCOL IN RESPONSE TO PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY

Effective March 16, 2020 through April 30, 2020

This protocol (the “Protocol”) applies in all bankruptcy cases and proceedings during the period of March 16, 2020 through April 30, 2020 (the “Protocol Period”) pending in the Richmond Division. During the Protocol Period, to the extent of any inconsistency between this Protocol, the local bankruptcy rules, and any applicable scheduling order, this Protocol shall govern. While this Protocol is intended to minimize the number of hearings held and in-person attendance at any required hearings, the due process rights and appellate rights of all parties-in- interest must be protected.

  1. Obligations of Parties and Counsel. Parties and counsel are responsible for becoming familiar with this Protocol and monitoring the Court’s website and the dockets of their cases. Counsel must make reasonable efforts to communicate with clients prior to any scheduled hearing and must specifically advise the client whether, in light of this Protocol, the client must attend said hearing.
  1. Continuance of Hearings by the Court. Hearings may be scheduled or rescheduled by the Court to be heard during the Protocol Period. The Clerk shall provide notice of any such hearings scheduled or rescheduled by the Court.
  1. Continuance of Hearings by the Parties. All matters, including  final evidentiary hearings and trials, may be continued for cause upon consent motion and order. Cause will be construed liberally and will include both health-related reasons and travel difficulties. Routine matters set on Wednesdays (for Judge Phillips, before 9:30AM and for Judge Huennekens, before 11:30AM) may be continued by agreement of the parties by telephone call to the courtroom deputies.
  1. Modified Procedures for Specific Types of Motions Pending During the Protocol Period. Unless a hearing is specifically requested or an objection is timely filed, during the Protocol Period, the Court will not conduct hearings on the following matters, but, instead, will rule on the pleadings after expiration of any requisite notice period:
    1. Reaffirmation Agreements: The Court will not conduct hearings on reaffirmation agreements in which the debtor(s) is represented by counsel but counsel could not certify that it would not impose an undue hardship. In such cases, unless a response is filed by the counterparty to the agreement within fourteen (14) days of the date of filing of the reaffirmation agreements, the Court may issue orders not approving such agreements, but finding that the debtors have complied with 11 U.S.C. §§ 521(a)(6) and 362(h). See In re Husain, 364 B.R. 211 (Bankr. E.D. Va. 2007); In re Isom, Case No. 07-31469, 2007 WL 2110318

(Bankr. E.D. Va. July 27, 2007). The Court will continue with its pre-Protocol Period procedures as to any other types of reaffirmation agreement.

  1. Motions to Extend the Automatic Stay Pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 362(c)(3): Upon expiration of the notice period, if no objections are timely filed and the debtor(s) has filed an affidavit in support of the motion, the debtor(s) may submit a proposed order granting a motion to extend the automatic stay. The order may provide that the stay is extended nunc pro tunc to the date the notice period expired. If no affidavit is submitted, a hearing will be required. This procedure does not apply to motions to impose the automatic stay pursuant to 11

U.S.C. § 362(c)(4). For either motions to extend the automatic stay or to impose the automatic stay, if a hearing is required, counsel for debtors are encouraged to proceed upon affidavit. Where testimony is required, the Court will liberally entertain requests for bridge orders pending a subsequent evidentiary hearing.

  1. Motions to Approve Loan Modification: Upon expiration of the negative notice period, movants may submit proposed orders granting motions to approve loan modifications. In order for a loan modification to be approved on a final basis, the movant must submit a fully executed  copy of the underlying loan agreement(s). If the movant does not have a fully executed copy of the underlying loan agreement(s), the movant may request an order conditionally approving the loan agreement, but not scheduling a final hearing.
  1. Applications to Approve Compensation: Upon expiration of the negative notice period, the movant may submit proposed orders approving applications to approve compensation. In Chapter 13 cases, such orders must be endorsed by the Chapter 13 trustee. For all other chapters, the proposed order must be endorsed by the United States trustee.
  1. Motions to Continue/Extend Deadlines: For motions to continue or extend any deadlines consented to by all necessary parties, no negative notice period is required and the parties may submit a consent order contemporaneously with the filing of the consent motion. For any other motion to continue or extend deadlines, unless expedited relief is requested, the movant must provide seven (7) days’ negative notice. Upon expiration of the notice period, the movant may submit an order granting the motion.
  1. Pre-trial Conferences: If all necessary parties are in agreement, in advance of any scheduled pre-trial conference, parties may contact the appropriate courtroom deputy to schedule a trial date. If the parties can select a mutually agreeable trial date and there is no other need to hold a pre-trial conference, the court may enter a pre-trial order without convening the pre-trial conference.

5. Remote Hearings. Unless otherwise ordered by the court, all non-evidentiary hearings during the Protocol Period may be conducted remotely by teleconference using CourtSolutions. All parties are encouraged to make liberal use of this policy.

2

  1. Hearings Non-Evidentiary. All counsel are encouraged to make liberal use of the Court’s negative notice procedures. All self-scheduled hearings during the Protocol Period shall be treated as non-evidentiary hearings. To schedule an evidentiary hearing, the parties must contact the hearing judge’s courtroom deputy.
  1. Evidence. Parties are encouraged to limit the number of persons attending a hearing. always strongly encouraged to submit stipulations of fact in advance of any hearing, which stipulations should be electronically filed on CM/ECF.
    1. Documentary Evidence: Notwithstanding anything to the contrary in the local bankruptcy rules or scheduling order, documentary evidence must be filed electronically on CM/ECF no later than 24 hours in advance of the hearing/trial. Counsel should contact the Clerk’s Office for instructions on how to provide any documentary evidence that is not in a suitable format to be filed electronically on CM/ECF.
    1. Witness Testimony: Parties are further encouraged to use deposition testimony and affidavits where appropriate. Where the parties cannot proceed on the deposition transcript or affidavit, witnesses may participate remotely at the discretion and pursuant to the direction of the hearing judge.
  1. Hearing Judge. During the Protocol Period, hearings may be held by the judge assigned to the case, or by any other bankruptcy judge.
  1. Request for Expedited Hearings. During the Protocol Period, expedited hearings must be requested in accordance with the local rules. In addition, counsel must send an email to the appropriate emergency contact, as detailed on Exhibit A hereto.

10. Time Sensitive Orders or Other Court Action. Any time-sensitive request not otherwise provided by paragraph 9 hereof should be directed to the appropriate emergency contact, as detailed on Exhibit A hereto.

  1. Deadlines. Unless otherwise modified by order of the Court, all deadlines remain in full force in effect. The Court will consider any timely request to modify/toll deadlines, which should be made by appropriate motion and order.
  1. This Protocol may be amended by further Standing Order, which shall be published on the Court’s website and distributed by email to all CM/ECF users. Each Judge may vary this Protocol on a case-by-case basis in his or her discretion.

EXHIBIT A

EMERGENCY CONTACT INFORMATION

UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF VIRGINIA2020-03-20T14:56:18-04:00

UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF VIRGINIA

PUBLIC NOTICE

Entry of Standing Order No. 20-5 Temporarily Suspending Section 341 Meetings in All Divisions of the Eastern District of Virginia

In light of the need to mitigate COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019) community spread, the Court has entered Standing Order No. 20-5, which, effective March 16, 2020, among other actions, as set forth in the Order, states that, “All meetings of creditors convened pursuant to 11

U.S.C. § 341 scheduled in all Divisions of this Court through March 31, 2020, are hereby CONTINUED.” The order provides other important information of interest. The order is attached and can be viewed on the Court’s internet web site’s home page, under Virginia Eastern News, and is accessible at https://www.vaeb.uscourts.gov/. The public notice and standing order also

are being physically posted at each division of the Court.

William C. Redden Date: March 13, 2020 Clerk of Court

Attachment

  • UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT EASTERN DISTRJCT OF VIRGINIA

In re: )

)

Section 341 Meetings of Creditors )

)

)

Standing Order No. 20-5

ORDER TEMPORARJL Y SUSPENDING SECTION 341 MEETINGS IN ALL DIVISIONS

This Order is being issued in response to the recent outbreak of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in the United States and the Commonwealth of Virginia. On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization characterized the COVID-19 outbreak as a pandemic. On March 13, 2020, the President of the United States declared a national emergency as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. The situation continues to evolve by the day.

The Court has reviewed the developing guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”). The CDC’s guidance includes the implementation of scalable mitigation strategies designed to slow the transmission of COVID-19 and protect individuals at increased risk.  Among these strategies is limiting large gatherings.

Given the risk to the public posed by the continued spread of COVID-19, and given that Section 341 meetings require high numbers of debtors and attorneys to congregate, it is hereby ORDERED that effective March 16, 2020:

  1. All meetings of creditors convened pursuant to 11 U.S.C. § 341 scheduled in all Divisions of this Court through March 31, 2020, are hereby CONTINUED. The Acting United States Trustee for Region Four will provide a list ofrescheduled dates for these Section 341 meetings to the Clerk of this Court who will direct his Deputy Clerks to issue notices of rescheduled Section 341 meeting in all affected cases.
  2. All deadlines that run from the date of the original date of the Section 341 meeting will instead run from the date of the continued Section 341 meeting.
  3. Any Judge of this Court may modify this Order by separate order entered in specific bankruptcy cases if the Judge determines that modification is justified based upon the facts and circumstances of a particular case.

Because the public health emergency continues to evolve, this Order may be modified as necessary based upon future developments.

COVID-19 APPELLATE AND LOCAL COURT INFORMATION2020-04-02T11:51:14-04:00

COVID-19 APPELLATE AND LOCAL COURT INFORMATION PAGE 1

The following announcements were provided by appellate and local courts for posting on Virginia’s Judicial System Website. Additional information may be available on local websites and verified social media.

Note: Please refresh your browser to view new content. You may refresh the contents of the current window in most internet browsers by holding the Ctrl and R keys.

Office of the Executive Secretary Rev: 3/23/20

Appellate Courts:

Court

General Announcement

Orders/Notices

Supreme Court of Virginia

Out of concern for the health and safety of the public and Supreme Court and Court of Appeals employees, the Supreme Court and Rose Lafoon Buildings will be closed to the public beginning Monday, March 16, 2020, until further notice. The buildings will remain open for employees and those needing access to the Clerks’ Offices or others who are here on official business.

Declaration of Judicial Emergency

Tolling of appellate deadlines

GSE

Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, HUD suspending all foreclosures and evictions2020-03-20T14:52:11-04:00

Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, HUD suspending all foreclosures and evictions

Foreclosure moratorium will last for 60 days

Read the full article here

Cities and states across the country are already suspending evictions and foreclosures in response to the spread of the coronavirus, but the federal government is taking the biggest step so far to keep people in their homes.

President Donald Trump announced Wednesday that the Department of Housing and Urban Development is suspending all foreclosures and evictions until the end of April.

HUD later announced its official policy, stating that the Federal Housing Administration is enacting an “immediate foreclosure and eviction moratorium for single family homeowners with FHA-insured mortgages” for the next 60 days.

That matches the policy announced Wednesday by the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

The FHFA announced Wednesday that it is directing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to suspend foreclosures and evictions for “at least 60 days.”

That would mean the moratorium lasts through mid-May, at least.

According to the FHFA, the foreclosure and eviction suspension applies to homeowners whose single-family mortgage is backed by either Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.

“This foreclosure and eviction suspension allows homeowners with an Enterprise-backed mortgage to stay in their homes during this national emergency,” FHFA Director Mark Calabria said in a statement.

Given that Fannie and Freddie are the largest mortgage financers in the country, the move is a sizable one.

“As a reminder, borrowers affected by the coronavirus who are having difficulty paying their mortgage should reach out to their mortgage servicers as soon as possible,” Calabria added. “The Enterprises are working with mortgage servicers to ensure that borrowers facing hardship because of the coronavirus can get assistance.”

The FHA foreclosure moratorium applies to homeowners that have an FHA-insured Title II Single Family forward and Home Equity Conversion mortgage.

“Today’s actions will allow households who have an FHA-insured mortgage to meet the challenges of COVID-19 without fear of losing their homes, and help steady market concerns,” HUD Secretary Ben Carson said. “The health and safety of the American people is of the utmost importance to the Department, and the halting of all foreclosure actions and evictions for the next 60 days will provide homeowners with some peace of mind during these trying times.”

The HUD announcement directs mortgage servicers to “halt all new foreclosure actions and suspend all foreclosure actions currently in process; and cease all evictions of persons from FHA-insured single-family properties.”

Earlier this month, the FHFA and HUD reminded mortgage servicers of their options for borrowers affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.

Included among those options is payment forbearance, which would allow affected borrowers to suspend their mortgage payment for up to 12 months due to hardship caused by the coronavirus.

The FHA also stated that it is encouraging servicers to “offer its suite of loss mitigation options to distressed borrowers – including those that could be impacted by the Coronavirus – to help prevent them from going into foreclosure.”

According to the FHA, those options include “short and long-term forbearance options, mortgage modifications, and other mortgage payment relief options available based on the borrower’s individual circumstances.”

Trump made the initial announcement on HUD’s policy during a Wednesday press conference discussing the growing impact of COVID-19.

“The Department of Housing and Urban Development is providing immediate relief to renters and homeowners by suspending all foreclosures and evictions until the end of April,” Trump said. “So, we’re working very closely with Dr. Ben Carson and everybody from HUD.”

The move comes at a time when civil courts and other housing authorities are shutting down in the wake of the virus, so it’s unlikely that many jurisdictions would even be able to process evictions and foreclosures at this point.

Foreclosure and eviction moratoriums are not a new step, but the government usually puts them in place in areas that suffered a natural disaster. But the spread of the virus has necessitated a nationwide moratorium.

“This is an uncertain time for many Americans, particularly those who could experience a loss of income. As such, we want to provide FHA borrower households with some immediate relief given the current circumstances,” Federal Housing Commissioner Brian Montgomery said. “Our actions today make it clear where the priority needs to be.”

In its announcement, the FHFA said that it will “continue monitor the coronavirus situation and update policies as needed.”

[Update: This article is updated with additional information on HUD’s policies and quotes from HUD officials.]

Extension of Foreclosure and Eviction Moratorium in connection with the Presidentially-Declared COVID-19 National Emergency2020-06-23T10:36:50-04:00

Date: June 17, 2020
Mortgagee Letter 2020-19

To: All FHA-Approved Mortgagees
All Direct Endorsement Underwriters
All Eligible Submission Sources for Condominium Project Approvals All FHA Roster Appraisers
All FHA-Approved 203(k) Consultants All HUD-Approved Housing Counselors
All HUD-Approved Nonprofit Organizations All Governmental Entity Participants
All Real Estate Brokers All Closing Agents

Subject Extension of Foreclosure and Eviction Moratorium in connection with the
Presidentially-Declared COVID-19 National Emergency

Purpose The purpose of this Mortgagee Letter is to inform mortgagees of an
extension to the foreclosure and eviction moratoriums originally issued in Mortgagee Letter 2020-4
and extended in Mortgagee Letter 2020-13 for borrowers with FHA-insured Single Family mortgages
covered under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act for an additional
period through August 31, 2020.

Effective Date The extension of the moratorium announced in this Mortgagee Letter is
effective immediately upon the expiration of the moratorium announced in Mortgagee Letter 2020-13
for all FHA-insured mortgages except for FHA- insured mortgages secured by vacant or abandoned
properties.

Public Feedback

HUD welcomes feedback from interested parties for a period of 30 calendar days from the date of
issuance. To provide feedback on this policy document, please send feedback to the FHA Resource
Center at answers@hud.gov.
HUD will consider the feedback in determining the need for future updates.

Affected Programs

This guidance applies to all FHA Title II Single Family mortgage programs.

www.hud.gov espanol.hud.gov

Mortgagee Letter 2020-19, Continued

Affected Topics

This guidance applies to all FHA Title II Single Family forward and Home Equity Conversion Mortgage
(reverse) mortgage programs except for FHA- insured mortgages secured by vacant or abandoned
properties.

Background On March 18, 2020, HUD published Mortgagee Letter 2020-04, through which the
Secretary of HUD authorized a 60-day moratorium on foreclosures of FHA-insured mortgages and
evictions of persons from properties securing FHA-insured mortgages, to ensure that individuals and
families were not displaced during this critical period. On May 14, 2020, HUD published Mortgagee
Letter 2020-13 to extend the moratorium that expired on May 17, 2020 through June 30, 2020. Due to
the continued national emergency resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, HUD is issuing this
Mortgagee Letter to extend the moratorium issued in Mortgagee Letter 2020-13 for all FHA-insured
mortgages except those secured by vacant or abandoned properties.

Moratorium on Foreclosures and Evictions and Extension of Deadlines

FHA-insured Single Family mortgages, excluding vacant or abandoned properties, are subject to an
extension to the moratorium on foreclosure through August 31, 2020. The moratorium applies to the
initiation of foreclosures and to foreclosures in process.

Separate from any eviction moratorium applicable to lessors provided under the CARES Act, evictions
of persons from properties securing FHA-insured Single Family mortgages, excluding actions to evict
occupants of legally vacant or abandoned properties, are also suspended through August 31, 2020.

Deadlines for the first legal action and reasonable diligence timelines are extended by 90 days
from the date of expiration of this moratorium for FHA- insured Single Family mortgages, except for
FHA-insured mortgages secured by vacant or abandoned properties.

Paperwork Reduction Act

The information collection requirements contained in this document have been approved by the Office
of Management and Budget (OMB) under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520) and
assigned OMB Control Numbers 2502-0429, 2502-0583, and 2502-0584. In accordance with the Paperwork
Reduction Act, HUD may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a
collection of information unless the collection displays a currently valid OMB Control Number.

2

Mortgagee Letter 2020-19, Continued
3
Questions
Any questions regarding this Mortgagee Letter may be directed to the FHA
Resource Center at 1-800-CALL-FHA. Persons with hearing or speech impairments may reach this number
by calling the Federal Relay Service at 1- 800-877-8339. For additional information on this
Mortgagee Letter, please visit www.hud.gov/answers.
Signature

Len Wolfson
Acting Assistant Secretary for Housing –
Federal Housing Commissioner

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